Matt Amodio Surpasses $1 Million on ‘Jeopardy!’

Matt Amodio, a Ph.D. candidate at Yale University, has surpassed $1 million with his 28th 'Jeopardy!' victory.
Matt Amodio, a Ph.D. candidate at Yale University, has surpassed $1 million with his 28th 'Jeopardy!' victory. (Image credit: Sony Pictures Television/'Jeopardy!')

Matt Amodio has surpassed $1 million in winnings with his 28th victory on Jeopardy!, in which he won $48,800. The win makes him the third-highest money winner in regular-season play in the game show’s history, behind only Greatest of All Time Ken Jennings and professional gambler James Holzhauer

In total, Amodio has won $1,004,001 and will return Monday to continue playing.

“This was beyond my wildest dreams going in,” Amodio, a Ph.D. candidate at Yale University in New Haven, Conn,, said in a statement. “I knew it was a possibility, but I thought it was a very remote possibility, and to have it actually happen is unbelievable.”

Over the course of his history-making 74-game run, Jennings won $2,520,700. Holzhauer won $2,462,216 over the course of 32 victories. Jennings later went on to become the Greatest of All Time in a primetime tournament on ABC in January 2020, where he faced Holzhauer and the game's biggest money winner, Brad Rutter, who in total has won nearly $5 million playing Jeopardy!, mostly in tournaments. Rutter first appeared on Jeopardy! in 2000, before the rules changed to allow players to continue past five days. 

With Amodio’s streak, Jeopardy! continues to be in the news. After longtime host Alex Trebek died of pancreatic cancer at the age of 80 last November, the show has been hosted by a series of guest hosts. 

Executive producer Mike Richards had been named permanent host in August but had to step back after reports surfaced showing that he had been named a defendant in discrimination lawsuits that were later settled while he was executive producing CBS’s daytime game show The Price Is Right. Website The Ringer also dug up old podcasts in which Richards made negative comments about women. Jeopardy! producer Sony Pictures Television ultimately fired Richards from executive producing both Jeopardy! and sister show Wheel of Fortune.

Also Read: Mike Richards Out as Executive Producer on 'Jeopardy!,' 'Wheel of Fortune'

Jeopardy! is now being executive produced by interim EP Michael Davies, who executive produced Who Wants to be a Millionaire for many years. It’s being alternatively hosted by Jennings, who also serves as consulting producer, and Call Me Kat’s Mayim Bialik, who also has been named the host of the show’s primetime specials and spinoffs. 

Also Read: Mayim Bialik, Ken Jennings to Share 'Jeopardy!' Hosting Duties

In the week ended Sept. 12, Jeopardy! averaged a 4.1 live plus same day national household rating, according to Nielsen Media Research, tying Wheel of Fortune for third place in the overall syndication household ratings.

Jeopardy! is produced by Sony Pictures Television and distributed in domestic syndication by CBS Media Ventures.

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.