Pat Sajak Welcomes Ryan Seacrest to Wheel of Fortune

Pat Sajak Welcomes Ryan Seacrest to Wheel of Fortune

Pat Sajak has officially passed the torch to Ryan Seacrest as the new host of “Wheel of Fortune.” After an impressive 41 seasons, Sajak, 77, bid farewell to the iconic game show, making way for Seacrest, 49, to take over. In a newly released promotional video, Sajak and his longtime co-host Vanna White warmly welcome Seacrest to the set.

“Well, this is it, Ryan. What do you think?” Sajak asks, gesturing to the familiar set. Seacrest responds with enthusiasm, “Impressive!” White, standing beside them, adds, “Ryan, I think the contestants are going to love you.”

Sajak reflects on the show’s impact, calling “Wheel of Fortune” a daily escape for its global audience. “People love this show. You’re never going to find a better job,” he says, nodding to White. “And you’re never going to find a better co-host.”

In his final episode, which marked his 8,010th appearance, Sajak expressed his gratitude to the viewers. “It’s been an incredible privilege to be invited into millions of homes night after night, year after year, decade after decade,” he said.

On June 6, White shared an emotional farewell to Sajak, saying, “I love you, Pat … I don’t know how to put into words what these last 41 years have meant to me. But I’m going to try. Eight thousand episodes went by like that.”

Seacrest, in a June 9 Instagram post, praised Sajak’s remarkable tenure. “Pat, congratulations on an incredible run with ‘Wheel of Fortune,'” Seacrest wrote. “Your dedication, charm, and wit have made the show a beloved part of American television for decades.”

Seacrest acknowledged the iconic partnership between Sajak and White, stating, “Together, you’ve created countless wonderful memories for viewers. You’ve set the standard for hosts everywhere, and this marks the end of an era.”

In the promo video, Sajak tells Seacrest that the best part of hosting is “meeting the players and getting to know the audience at home.” He emphasizes that “people love this show” as a family-friendly escape. Seacrest, clearly excited, responds, “Well, you both make it look so easy.”

Seacrest officially joins White when “Wheel of Fortune” season 42 kicks off this fall. Despite feeling the “pressure” of stepping into Sajak’s shoes, Seacrest is eager to take on the role. “There’s no one better than Pat Sajak,” he told “Entertainment Tonight.” “He is so smooth and seamless. He’s beloved by the country. So I feel a lot of pressure. [But] I’m really excited. I can’t wait to just give away a bunch of money to people every night.”

Seacrest, who has long admired Sajak, referred to him as “a legend.” He shared that Sajak encouraged him, saying, “You’re going to have a great time. It’s so much fun. What’s better than giving away money and doing that every single night?”

The announcement of Seacrest’s new role came in June, with “Wheel of Fortune” making it official on social media. “It’s official! Starting in 2024 @RyanSeacrest will take the stage as the new host of Wheel of Fortune. We’re so excited – Welcome Ryan!”

Seacrest expressed his humility and excitement in a statement, saying, “I’m truly humbled to be stepping into the footsteps of the legendary Pat Sajak. I can say, along with the rest of America, that it’s 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 right at home with them.”

Before becoming a household name, Seacrest found a mentor in broadcasting legend Dick Clark, who helped propel his career. Seacrest now hosts multiple shows and works behind the scenes as a producer on some of the biggest television programs. His estimated worth is around $450 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

Sajak announced his departure from “Wheel of Fortune” on June 12, stating, “Well, the time has come. I’ve decided that our 41st season, which begins in September, will be my last. It’s been a wonderful ride, and I’ll have more to say in the coming months. Many thanks to you all. If nothing else, it’ll keep the clickbait sites busy!”

Despite Sajak’s exit, White will continue as co-host through the 2025-26 season. She recently renewed her contract, ensuring her presence on the show alongside Seacrest. White joined “Wheel of Fortune” in December 1982 and has been a beloved figure ever since.

In his final farewell, Sajak reflected on the show’s legacy. “It’s been an incredible privilege to be invited into millions of homes, night after night, year after year, decade after decade. And I always felt that the privilege came with the responsibility to keep this daily half-hour a safe place for family fun. No social issues. No politics. Nothing embarrassing, I hope. Just a game. But gradually it became more than that.”

He added, “A place where kids learned their letters, where people from other countries honed their English skills, where families came together along with friends and neighbors, and entire generations. What an honor to play even a small part in all of that. Thank you for allowing me into your lives.”

Sajak will stay on as a consultant for the next three years, ensuring a smooth transition for Seacrest. As “Wheel of Fortune” enters a new era, fans can look forward to seeing Seacrest and White continue the show’s legacy of family-friendly entertainment.

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