Who Will Take Over for Pat Sajak on ‘Wheel of Fortune’?

Wheel of Fortune‘s Pat Sajak is one of the most well-known game show hosts in history. According to Fox News, Sajak holds the Guinness World Record for “Longest Career as a Game Show Host of the Same Show.” Sadly, the television icon was absent from the episode filmed on Nov. 7 due to health issues.

A Wheel of Fortune arcade game | John Greim/LightRocket via Getty Images

Pat Sajak (briefly) makes way for new host

Believe it or not, there was a time before Sajak hosted Wheel of Fortune; according to CBS Press Express, the show is in its thirty-seventh season. The network version of the show lasted for several years with different presenters before Sajak debuted on the syndicated version in 1983. According to The A.V. Club, Sajak had to undergo emergency surgery to unblock his intestine. His surgery meant that the taping of the show scheduled for Nov. 6 had to be cancelled. Someone else had to fill in for him on Nov. 7. The show’s producers chose a perfect, albeit obvious, replacement: Vanna White.

White, who also began her stint on Wheel of Fortune in 1983, has only filled in for Sajak once in 1996 because he caught laryngitis. Since her debut, White has only missed three weeks of work; she took time off to mourn the death of her fiance in a plane crash in 1986. People reported White said Wheel of Fortune fans helped her through that taxing period of her life.

The official Wheel of Fortune Twitter account informed the world Sajak “is resting comfortably and looking forward to getting back to work.” The Tampa Bay Times reported White will host the show until Sajak fully recovers. It is unclear how long White’s new role will last.

Vanna White and Pat Sajak | Jim Spellman/WireImage

Disney, Christmas, and ‘Wheel of Fortune’

The new episodes hosted by White will begin airing on Dec. 9. According to CNN, the first of these episodes is going to feature five different guest stars. The guest stars are five of Walt Disney‘s most beloved creations: Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck, and Pluto. The episode will also have a Christmas theme, with new set dressing reminiscent of a Hallmark Christmas card or a Currier and Ives print.

Pat Sajak and Vanna White’s legendary chemistry

Vanna White and Pat Sajak together in New York City | Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images

White said when she auditioned for Wheel of Fortune, the show’s creator, Merv Griffin, was struck by the sibling-like chemistry she and Sajak had. While many famous entertainers who regularly work with each other develop contentious relationships, White and Sajak get along well. White says she only argued with Sajak once since they’ve been on the air together. The two entertainers quarreled about whether or not it’s appropriate to put ketchup on a hot dog. Sajak, who is from Chicago, finds the practice disgusting.

White is probably glad to hear Sajak is resting confortably following his surgery. Sajak and White stand alongside Homer and Marge, Lucy and Ricky, and Gilligan and the Skipper as one of the most iconic duos in the history of television.