“Jeopardy!” champion James Holzhauer is slamming the game show’s major changes for Season 40 amid the ongoing writers strike.
Holzhauer, who holds the record for single-game winnings, suggested showrunner Michael Davies’ recent game show announcement was hypocritical.
“If you don’t have time to listen, here’s the executive summary of today’s announcement: 1:00-2:00: Jeopardy’s writers are invaluable and we couldn’t produce the show without them,” Holzhauer shared on X, formerly known as Twitter, with a link to the “Inside Jeopardy” podcast.
“2:00-15:00: Here is how we will produce the upcoming season without them.”
The former champion’s social media post comes a few days after Davies announced “Jeopardy!” will reuse questions from past episodes, in addition to new ones that were created before the Hollywood strike. Instead of recruiting new contestants, the show will also pull players from previous seasons.
Davies explained it wouldn’t be “fair” for new contestants to compete on the beloved game show with non-original material. “Jeopardy!” will give previous contestants from seasons 37 and 38 a second chance.
“So we decided that really we needed to invite back and give a second chance in general to players who probably thought that their chance to come back and play on the Alex Trebek stage had gone forever,” he said.
Although Holzhauer didn’t directly speak out against the announcement, his recent social media post appeared to have slammed the continuation of the show in the middle of the writers strike.
This isn’t the first major change “Jeopardy!” had to go through since the Hollywood strike.
The shows, which are taped months in advance, were shot in conjunction with Hollywood’s writers strike, which co-host Mayim Bialik chose to support by stepping down from her hosting duties.
Another change Davies announced was that contestants will receive a chance to win more money since the prize increased for second-and third-place winners by $1,000 each.
The major prize money announcement comes after “Jeopardy!” fans learned that the game show did not compensate contestants for travel expenses.
“Now, second-place winners will receive $3,000 and third-place winners will receive $2,000. The move was made in response to growing criticisms over the fact that runners-up must fund their own travel to participate in the show,” Davies revealed on the “Inside Jeopardy!” podcast.
Former champion Ken Jennings will return for Season 40 to host “Jeopardy!”
Although Jennings and Bialik are both hosts of the show, they typically split the season.