LeVar Burton's hopes of hosting "Jeopardy!" may not have been realized, but he is still in the game show business.
The actor will be partnering up with Entertainment One (eOne), which is owned by Hasbro, to develop a new game show that is based on the iconic trivia game "Trivial Pursuit," according to Variety.
"'Trivial Pursuit' is one of the best-known brands in the gaming universe," Burton said. "I am thrilled to have partnered with Hasbro and eOne to bring this beloved game to market as a premium show for television."
Burton will be hosting the new show and will also take on the role of executive producer alongside producers Tara Long and Geno McDermott from eOne and LeVar Burton Entertainment’s Sangita Patel.
"LeVar Burton has been an iconic member of American pop culture for decades from 'Roots' to 'Reading Rainbow' to 'Star Trek' and beyond," Long, who is the president of Global Unscripted Television for eOne, said in a statement to the New York Post. "His love for intellectual curiosity paired with his ability to connect with audiences worldwide make him the perfect partner to bring Hasbro’s beloved trivia game to households in a new and exciting way."
Burton was one of the front-runners to take over the "Jeopardy!" hosting gig following the death of longtime host Alex Trebek. He did a guest stint on the ABC series after a petition launched by fans called for execs to add him to the roster.
In his career, Burton has "inspired and shaped the minds of several generations of trivia-loving nerds," according to the petition, which amassed over 296,880 signatures.
In an interview with the Associated Press, Burton admitted that it was a "real challenge" to host the beloved game show.
"You’re not going to be smooth as Alex, let go of that," he said. "But what you can bring to the table is you. So that became my point of focus. And when it did, I started having fun."
Burton added that the pressure, and his natural tendency, was to "want to live up to Alex’s example, his legacy."
"I came backstage after taping the first episode and I said to [my wife] Stephanie, 'Well, how did I do?'" Burton recalled. "She said, 'Ehhh.'"
Speaking about whether or not he was feeling optimistic about being named a permanent host at the time, Burton said that the most important thing was that he "went for it" and that his "passion was rewarded."
"I got what I wanted, which was an opportunity to compete for the job," he said. "If I don’t get the gig, it’s not immaterial, but it certainly is secondary. I got what I was after. The chance — get me in the room."
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