Major Details Leak About Mayim Bialik's 'Jeopardy!' Firing

Bialik reportedly "wasn't loved on set."

There were a number of factors that contributed to Mayim Bialik's dismissal from Jeopardy! That's according to Matthew Belloni, the author of Puck News' flagship newsletter, What I'm Hearing

Bialik was let go by Sony Pictures Television as host of the syndicated game show Jeopardy!, a position she had held since 2022 with Ken Jennings. Although Sony insists that the parting was intended to "maintain continuity" for viewers, Belloni said that according to three sources close to the show, It's at least reasonable to assume that Bialik's actions during the strike were a contributing factor. 

Sony TV executive Suzanne Prete and executive producer Michael Davies were reportedly furious with Bialik, who declared that she would leave the show for the last week of filming to protest for the strikers' rights in solidarity with the show's writers. The nature of filming Jeopardy! necessitates strict timing to keep the five episodes per day schedule of the show. Belloni also alleged that Bialik "wasn't loved on set," and in order to accommodate her Fox sitcom, Call Me Kat, Sony had changed the season's shooting schedule. 

In addition, it was explained to Bialik's reps that her refusal to perform breached the terms of her contract, which began with a salary of $4 million (including her primetime Jeopardy! work) and has increased by an average of $1 million annually since. Jennings, who was a substitute on those final episodes, is paid the same amount.

According to Belloni, "post-strikes, Bialik had expected business as usual," however, Sony informed her she would not be needed next season. Despite being offered the chance to stay on for the rest of the season, she declined. If ABC renews Celebrity Jeopardy! and the college tournament for 2025-26, then she may continue her stints on those programs. But Belloni noted, "Given her anger, I'll be a bit surprised if that happens."

Over the weekend, the studio behind Jeopardy! released a statement explaining their decision not to rehire Bialik to host alongside Ken Jennings after she announced that she was leaving the game show over the weekend. "We made the decision to have one host for the syndicated show next season to maintain continuity for our viewers, and Ken Jennings will be the sole host for syndicated Jeopardy!" the statement reads. "We are truly grateful for all of Mayim's contributions to Jeopardy!, and we hope to continue to work with her on primetime specials."

The Big Bang Theory alum posted on Instagram on Dec. 15 that she had been let go. "As the holiday break begins in Hollywood, I have some Jeopardy! news," Bialik's announcement began. "Sony has informed me that I will no longer be hosting the syndicated version of Jeopardy! I am incredibly honored to have been nominated for a primetime Emmy for hosting this year and I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of the Jeopardy! family. For all of you who have supported me through this incredible journey and to the fans, contestants, writers, staff and crew of America's Favorite Quiz Show, thank you."

Bialik was first announced as Jennings' Jeopardy! co-host in 2022 as the studio struggled to find a permanent hosting arrangement following the death of Alex Trebek. They shared hosting duties that were to continue for the current 40th season until Bialik's announcement.