'Wheel of Fortune' legend Pat Sajak tapes final episode of iconic game show; air date announced

It's an end of era for "Wheel of Fortune" longtime host Pat Sajak - and for fans of the iconic game show.

After more than four decades as host, Sajak’s final episode will air on Friday, June 7, according to Deadline. The farewell episode was taped on Friday. 

In June 2023, Sajak announced he was exiting the show.

"Well, the time has come," Sajak wrote in a statement. "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!)." 


"Celebrity Wheel of Fortune" stars Vanna White and Pat Sajak. (Eric McCandless/ABC via Getty Images)

In 1975, the game show premiered with Chuck Woolery and Susan Stafford leading the show as hosts. It was not until 1982 that Sajak and Vanna White stepped in as co-hosts. 

RELATED: Vanna White extends ‘Wheel of Fortune’ contract with ‘substantial pay increase’: report

In response to Sajak's exit news, Vanna White posted, "When we started @WheelofFortune who could have imagined we’d still be at it 41 seasons later? I couldn’t be happier to have shared the stage with you for all these years with one more to come. Cheers to you, @patsajak!"

In September 2022, Sajak surpassed Bob Barker, former host of "Price is Right," as the longest-running host of any game show, having helmed the show for 40 years.

In addition to setting this record, he has also been nominated for 23 Daytime Emmy Awards, winning three of them, as well as earning a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and being honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2011 Daytime Emmy Awards.

A week after Sajak's news was released, it was announced that Ryan Seacrest would be taking over as host in Season 42.