Seacrest is there – but is White absent?
Ryan Seacrest, 48, was announced Tuesday as Pat Sajak’s replacement on “Wheel of Fortune” after the veteran host retires next year.
However, it remains to be seen whether Sajak’s longtime letter-whirler Vanna White, 66, will join Seacrest on the revamped scheme.
White, who has appeared on “Wheel” since 1982, is reportedly seeking legal counsel following news of Sajak’s retirement – and amid claims she hasn’t had a raise in 18 years.
According Puck NewsWhite has been earning about $3 million a year since 2005 and has only received bonuses, not raises, during that time.
Sajak, 76, is allegedly paid much more for his duties. In 2016, Forbes reported that he was making $15 million a year from the show.
Now White has reportedly hired “aggressive” attorney Bryan Freedman, who has represented a slew of Hollywood heavyweights in disputes with the television networks that employ them.
Freedman previously represented the “Jeopardy!” beleaguered and short-lived! host Mike Richards. It was also reported that Freedman was retained by Don Lemon after his acrimonious ousting from CNN.
“Wheel of Fortune” is produced by Sony Pictures Television, with Freedman said to “tack hard on the issue of the pay gap” with the company, “as well as possible gender discrimination in regards to the salary of White”.
White’s contract is said to be up at the end of the 2023-24 season, and she hopes to get a big payday if she stays on the show.
It’s unclear how much Seacrest will be paid for his hosting gig. He will also serve as a consulting producer on the show, according to a statement from Sony on Tuesday.
The Post has reached out to “Wheel of Fortune” as well as reps for White and Seacrest for comment.
Seacrest’s announcement as the new host comes after an unidentified insider alleged to the Daily Mail last week that White fears she will be “forced out” of her role once Sajak retires.
The duo have been the faces of “Wheel” for over 40 years, with Sajak joining the show in 1981 while White came on board a year later.
White has yet to comment on Seacrest’s casting.
“I am truly honored to walk in the footsteps of the legendary Pat Sajak,” Seacrest said in a statement Tuesday, officially confirming that he will be taking on host duties.
“I can say, along with the rest of America, that it has been a privilege and pure joy to watch Pat and Vanna on our television screens for an unprecedented 40 years, making us smile every night and feel like home. with them.”
“Pat, I love how you always celebrated the contestants and made viewers at home feel comfortable,” he added. “I look forward to learning all I can from you during this transition.”
He hinted that White would remain on the program, saying, “I look forward to continuing the tradition of spinning the wheel and working alongside the great Vanna White.”
Sajak announced two weeks ago that he will resign next spring once the next season of the beloved game show is over.
“Well, the time has come. I’ve decided that our 41st season, which begins in September, will be our last,” he tweeted. “It was a wonderful race, and I will have more to say in the months to come. Thank you to all of you. (If nothing else, this will keep clickbait sites busy!)”