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Jeopardy! exec says he’d ‘bend the rules’ so TWO fan-favorite contestants can ‘compete again’

JEOPARDY! may be off-season, but the show's decision-makers are anything but.

The executive producer has revealed he'd "bend the rules" so two fan-favorite contestants-turned-hosts including Ken Jennings can "compete again."

Jeopardy!'s boss would 'bend the rules' so Ken Jennings can 'compete again'Credit: ABC
He's also 'not closing the door' on 2021 Tournament of Champions host Buzzy CohenCredit: Getty

Jeopardy! is currently on summer break and is airing reruns until Season 39 is broadcast on September 12th.

Alum Ken, 48, and actress Mayim Bialik, 46, have been announced as officially split-hosting permanently in the meantime.

The show has also announced just this month it's bringing back live audiences, given Ken the official title of "host" instead of being introduced as "hosting Jeopardy!" - and a legacy-based Hall of Fame.

In fact, the boss behind all of these new changes that have fans buzzing has wildly revealed nothing, or no one is off the board.

Executive producer Michael Davies - who took over for the disgraced Mike Richards in 2021 - was asked a fan question about James Holzhauer on the show's (also new) weekly podcast.

The famous former champ has the second-most winnings of all time behind only Ken himself.

On Jeopardy! James, the EP said: "We love James Holzhauer and we are very much in contact."

"He'd definitely be invited back [for a special tournament] from us and I believe he'd accept."


EP Mike added: "But also Ken - Ken does consistently say he is retired from playing.

"But I wouldn't close the door completely from Ken playing in the future, though he seems to have closed some doors himself."

Co-host and "Clue Crew" member Sarah Foss noted that isn't allowed.

"Well, we did make some rules in the past, not that rules can’t be broken.

"But that once a contestant had hosted the program they could no longer compete because they've seen behind the curtain if you will."

Mike replied, "That’s producer Sarah giving me a disapproving look."

"But if Ken is the Greatest Of All Time, it’s kind of like Arnold Palmer who tees off at the Masters," the EP swung back.

"I certainly - if Ken came to me desperately and said 'this is it, I still want to play Jeopardy!, I can't say I'd close the door on Ken playing any form of Jeopardy! at any point in the future."

Co-host Sarah then asked: "What about Buzzy Cohen, he hosted our Tournament of Champions [in 2021]?"

Mike replied: "I feel like Buzzy should be able to play Jeopardy! again at some point."

Sarah exclaimed: "You heard it here first Mike Davies, executive producer, can change the rules at will."

After the podcast dropped, Buzzy - the bespectacled brainiac fans love - jokingly tweeted in approval: "I have a solution for the Buzzy/Ken 'Problem'."

He seemed to imply he was up for playing against Ken in a future tournament.

"You’re both my favorite champions," one fan excitedly replied.


The revelation came after EP Michael earlier revealed his scoreboard of exciting spinoffs may include a live "Masters" league where any former can return and compete again

EP Mike revealed on the first episode of the show's podcast on August 1st: "The missing brand for me in the world of Jeopardy! is a primetime live program or streaming live program.

"Where the very best players of all time, and currently, compete against each other for everything.

"I get almost teary-eyed thinking about it."

Mike said: "To see James Holzhauer play against Amy Schneider, Matt Amodio, Mattea Roach, Ryan Long."

"We've got so many great champions from the last years who could compete."

Because the Greatest of All Time tournament only happens "every 20 years," he explained, he wants to launch the "live" edition or Master's League.

The prospect "scares everyone on production but ... I think we could do Jeopardy! live."

"We could film a half-hour show in an hour time period" with "pre-game, post-game" and "stops for malfunctions," he imagined.

Podcast co-host and producer Sarah Hoss added, "Or the judges have to stop because of a ruling."

Fans would get to see the discussions on rulings that have infuriated them, including Sadie Golberger's infamous "Harriet Tubman" signature snub.

Though this live edition is still in the works, clearly a lot is cooking in Culver City.


When the regular show returns, Ken will host from September 12th to January.

Mayim will then take over the reins in January and host until the end of the season - as much as she is available.

The Big Bang Theory actress will balance her hosting duties while filming her Fox comedy, Call Me Kat.

Mayim will also host Celebrity Jeopardy! while Ken will host the Second Chance Tournament - the cast of which was announced last week - and the Tournament of Champions.

This year's TOC cast will be revealed on the official podcast - pumping out the seemingly endless fan service - next week.

Jeopardy!'s boss said he'd 'bend the rules' so Ken Jennings & Buzzy Cohen can play again even though they've both hostedCredit: AP
EP Mike Davies also said 'James Holzhauer should be invited back' for the potential live 'Masters' spinoff tooCredit: Getty Images - Getty
Ken has officially scored Alex Trebek's role with Mayim Bialik - but its new EP sees Jeopardy! more like 'a major league sport'Credit: Getty