LeVar Burton has his sights set on a new gig! Amid a wave of guest hosts stepping in to fill late Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek's spot following his death last fall, the Reading Rainbow host and Star Trek: The Next Generation actor is uniting with fans in their calls for him to guest host the long-running game show.
On Monday, the actor took to Twitter to share the link to a fan-created Change.org petition calling on Jeopardy! producers to make him "the next host" of the show. Burton said he was "leaving this here in the event the powers that be are listening," suggesting he would be more than willing to step in and fill Trebek's shoes. He has plenty of support for the role, with more than 197,000 people have signed the petition, with the current goal set at 200,000 signatures.
Leaving this here in the event the powers that be are listening... https://t.co/xB3x8atDCv— LeVar Burton (@levarburton) April 6, 2021
The petition, naming Sony Pictures Entertainment and Jeopardy! executive producers Harry Friedman and Mike Richards argues that "between hosting 21 seasons of the educational Reading Rainbow, playing the brainiac engineer Geordi La Forge on Star Trek: the Next Generation, and filling the role of Kunta Kinte in the ever-important mini-series Roots," Burton has "inspired and shaped the minds of several generations of trivia-loving nerds." The goal of the petition, according to its creator, is to show "how much love the public has for Burton, and how much we'd all love to see him as the next host of Jeopardy!"
The petition has been around for several months now, and his Monday tweet was not the first time Burton has put his name in the running for Jeopardy! host. In November, the actor shared the petition and thanked fans for their support, writing that "even if nothing comes from it, I can't tell how much how I appreciate all y'alls love and support." The petition was created just after Trebek''s Nov. 8 passing, with Burton adding in a follow-up tweet at the time, "Of course while I'm very flattered by the petition, my thoughts are definitely with Alex [Trebek's] family and his millions of fans and the devastating loss of this irreplaceable legend."
Burton is best known for portraying Lt. Commander Geordi La Forge in Star Trek: The Next Generation and four Star Trek movies. He is also beloved by generations of fans as the host of PBS' Reading Rainbow, a series developed to encourage young children to read. At this time, it is unclear if producers have eyes Burton for the role. Since Trebek's death, the show has tapped a number of big-name guest hosts, including Katie Couric, Anderson Cooper, Savannah Guthrie, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Bill Whitaker, and Mayim Bialik. Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is acting as the current guest host and will remain in the role for two weeks.