Guest host Sanjay Gupta had to keep “Jeopardy! »Clues in the hotel safe


CNN chief medical correspondent Dr Sanjay Gupta shared behind-the-scenes information on the venerable quiz show “Jeopardy!”, For which he recorded two weeks of episodes as the last in a series of guest hosts.

The invitation to do so, following the death of longtime host Alex Trebek in November, was a “special honor,” he wrote in a 2,900-word essay on the website on Sunday. from CNN. His immigrant engineering parents and Gupta, originally from Michigan, were watching “Jeopardy!” together, finding that “the great equalizer in our family. We all had our strengths and weaknesses.… I still remember my dad looking proud when he found the right answer. I later realized that he was even more proud when his young son did the same. “

Neurosurgeon Gupta, 51, said the show’s “standards and practices team were ubiquitous on set.” They would remind him “to keep an eye on all papers with clues, even asking me to put them in the hotel safe every time I left the room. I wasn’t supposed to share clues with him. anyone, of course, not even my spouse.… There was a constant and deliberate reworking of schedules and content to keep this remarkable story of high integrity. ”

The show, he noted, has its own language. “Instead of questions and answers, these are clues and answers,” he wrote. Mike Richards, the executive producer, even had a… ‘greenhouse’ pot every time I asked a candidate for their ‘answer.’ Right away, in my earpiece, I heard his calm, patient voice: ‘Answer Seconds later he was saying, “You owe me a beer.”

Gupta detailed the mechanics for being on stage, getting familiar with the clues, and keeping the contestants on track, and said that despite the apparent dryness of the fact-filled format, there is a great deal of emotion involved. Richards, he said, “told me something that I have never forgotten:” For the contestants who come to play, it’s one of the greatest days of their lives, and when you watch someone at the end of the show and their a “Jeopardy!” champion, it’s like putting a gold medal around your neck. ‘ “

This awareness, he said, “was powerful.… I wanted to make sure I didn’t let the incredible competitors down.”

On Twitter Gupta wrote on Monday: “I’ve been on TV for 20 years, but nothing could have prepared me to welcome @Jeopardy! I hope I’ve made Alex Trebek proud and look forward to the next two weeks.”


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