LeVar Burton Lands Big New Role Amid 'Jeopardy!' Host Campaign

Just as LeVar Burton preps to guest host Jeopardy!, he has an acting role to jump into. The Nancy Drew spinoff Tom Swift has reportedly cast Burton, per Deadline. The actor will lend his voice to Barclay, Swift's AI companion and mentor, while Tian Richards will portray Swift.

The Tom Swift pilot will air as an episode of Nancy Drew in the hopes that it will eventually be picked up to series. (The CW will also be filming a more traditional pilot episode for Tom Swift.) In addition to sharing details about Tom Swift, Deadline also shared what fans need to know about Barclay. According to the publication, Swift created Barclay when he was only eight years old and has subsequently transferred the AI companion into all of his devices. This new version of Barclay is a big difference from the character in the books on which the series is based. Instead of being a Siri-like personality, in the books, Bud Barclay (whom Barclay appears to be based on) was Tom's best friend.

While Burton is prepared to voice the character of Barclay for Tom Swift, he also has his Jeopardy! duties to look forward to. Over the course of the past several months, numerous guest hosts have been tapped for the quiz show program in light of Alex Trebek's death in November. Everyone from CNN anchor Anderson Cooper to Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has tried their hands at hosting the series. Considering that many different individuals were being tapped to serve as the Jeopardy! guest host, viewers noted that they wanted Burton to take on the role.


Finally, in late April, the show announced that Burton would serve as the guest host for an upcoming slate of episodes. Unlike the other hosts, Burton's time on Jeopardy! will only last one week from July 26 to July 30. The Reading Rainbow personality couldn't contain his excitement over the news, especially as he has been vying for the position since 2018. He wrote on Twitter, "THANK YOU... to all y'all for your passionate support! I am overjoyed, excited, and eager to be guest-hosting Jeopardy!, and will do my utmost best to live up to your faith you in me. YOU MADE A DIFFERENCE! Go ahead and take my word for it, this time."