Daytime TV viewers see Drew Carey’s mug every day on their screens, but how long has Drew hosted The Price Is Right? And who came before him? Consider yourself a Showcase Showdown winner — we’ve got the intel!
For a long time, the CBS game show was synonymous with Bob Barker, he of the tan skin and the white hair. (You definitely know Bob if you saw his unforgettable, profane scene in the Adam Sandler comedy Happy Gilmore.)
Bob hosted the current version of the game show from the time it premiered in 1972 until his retirement in 2007. (The dude is still with us, too — he’s 93 years old!) Then Drew took up the microphone instead.
Drew, then 49 years old, had gotten his big break over a decade prior as a stand-up comedian. In 1995, he got his own primetime sitcom, ABC’s The Drew Carey Show, and in 1998, he started hosting the original American version of the improv show Whose Line Is It Anyway? on ABC. That same year, he pulled in $45.5 million.
When Bob called it quits, he had emceed 6,586 episodes of The Price Is Right over 35 years. To find a successor, CBS flipped through their Rolodex of potential hosts — Rosie O’Donnell was interested in the position, too — before landing on Drew, who announced the news on The Late Show With David Letterman that July. “I realize what a big responsibility this is,” he said. “It’s only a game show, but it’s the longest-running game show in American television, and I plan to keep it that way.”
“I’m cool with it,” Bob told the Associated Press of CBS’s casting choice. He said he wasn’t very familiar with Drew’s work, but he still had kind words for his heir. “I understand he ad-libs very well and that he has a very nice, friendly way of working, and I think both of those would be helpful to him on The Price Is Right," he said.
Drew just celebrated his 10-year anniversary with the show this September. He and Bob are still the only two people to have hosted the current daytime edition of The Price Is Right, though emcees Dennis James and Tom Kennedy hosted nighttime editions in the ‘70s and ‘80s, respectively. All these years later, we’re sure Drew is being paid handsomely for his hosting duties… he's reportedly worth a whopping $165 million today!