Speculation As To Why Vanna White Has Been Missing From ‘Wheel Of Fortune’
Vanna White has been the letter-turner and co-host of the game show “Wheel of Fortune” for over 30 years, and she has hardly ever been absent from the show. Only during a few rare circumstances was she absent. For example, she was noticeably absent from the show in 1986 after her boyfriend died in a plane crash. She, understandably, took time to mourn. She was absent again in 1991 when she took two weeks off for her honeymoon. This season, she will be noticeably absent again, but this time, it has nothing to do with health or marriage.
Supposedly, White caught COVID and that’s why she’ll be absent from the show during the upcoming Teacher’s Week episodes that were filmed in July. In her place is California’s “Teacher of the Year” winner Bridgette Donald-Blue who will be on air turning the letters.
What’s really going on is that White is off the air due to contract negotiations. She hasn’t had a raise in 20 years, and with Sajak retiring, she feels it’s well past time for a raise. According to sources, the decision to have Donald-Blue fill in for White may be to get her lawyers to back down. Sources explain that it’s either a “smart producing move or a veiled message sent to White’s aggressive lawyers: Go ahead, push us harder.”
TMZ reports that White’s lawyer,Bryan Freedman, is asking Sony to pay White 50% of what host Pat Sajak is currently making each episode. According to TMZ, Sajak makes around $15 million per year while White has only been making $3 million per year for the past 18 years.
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Sajak is set to retire after filming this season of the popular game show. Ryan Seacrest has been tapped as his replacement, and shows with Seacrest as the host will begin airing in September 2024.
Does it surprise you that White hasn’t had a raise in 18 years? Do you think the show’s producers are trying to threaten White’s lawyers to back down by having a teacher fill in for her on “Wheel of Fortune”? Do you think White’s roll warrants a salary that’s half of Sajak’s salary?