On October 6, 1985 with the death of the show's original announcer Johnny Olson due to a cerebral hemorrhage, a complication from a stroke he had suffered several days earlier, the producers started an immediate search for a new announcer. Gene Wood, Rod Roddy, Rich Jeffries, and Bob Hilton all tried out for the announcing position. 48 year old Rod Roddy was selected for the gig as the show's second permanent announcer. Roddy was best known to audiences as the off-screen announcer on the ABC sitcom Soap.
On October 27th 2003, announcer Rod Roddy dies of colon and breast cancer. The producers started an immediate and extensive search for a new announcer. Randy West, Daniel Rosen, Burton Richardson, Art Sanders (II), Roger Rose, Rich Fields, Don Bishop, and Jim Thornton each did about two weeks of shows as an on air audition for the announcing position. To choose a successor, a meeting was called between Bob Barker (Executive Producer), Roger Dobkowitz (Producer), Bart Eskander (Director), Kathy Greco (Associate Producer), and a representative from Fremantle. There were many different opinions (i.e, Barker favored Rich Fields, while Dobkowitz favored Randy West, etc...) and after much discussion it was narrowed down between Fields and Thornton. In a final vote, the decision was made to hire 44 year old Rich Fields for the gig as the show's third regular announcer.
The New Price Is Right premiered at at 10:30 on September 4th, 1972 on CBS. Taped at the CBS studio in Los Angeles, the half-hour program aired Mondays through Fridays and featured several contests and a showcase round.
On January 17, 1992 Danielle Torres from Pepperdine University became the biggest winner in the show's history winning $88,865 in cash and prizes. However, this record was broken on September 18, 2006, the first show of the 35th season, when contestant Vickyann Chrobak-Sadowski made daytime television history in more ways than one. Due to an astonishing Double Showcase Win, she won $147,517 in cash and prizes. As a result, Chrobak-Sadowski not only becomes the biggest winner in the Daytime History of "The Price Is Right" to date, she ALSO sets the record for most money in cash and prizes ever won by a contestant in one appearance on a Network Daytime Game Show. The old record was set on 19 May 1984 when unemployed ice cream truck driver Michael Larson appeared as a contestant on Press Your Luck, and won $110,237 in cash and prizes.
The original models, formally named "Barker's Beauties" were Janice Pennington and Anitra Ford. At the start of the fourth season, when the show went into a one-hour format, Dian Parkinson became the third newest "beauty". Then in early 1977, Anitra Ford was replaced by 24 year-old Holly Halstrom. Janice, Dian, and Holly would show their true beauty success when modeling for new cars, exotic vacation, and nifty prizes. Then, a milestone occurred: On Christmas Eve (December 24, 1990), Kathleen Bradley not only became the fourth new "Barker Beauty", but also the first Black American beauty in both CBS Daytime and "Price Is Right" history. On June 18, 1993, the Season 21 finale, Dian Parkinson left the show "to pursue other interests". Bob allowed her to say goodbye before the 6th pricing game. The producers of "The Price Is Right" launched a nationwide search to replace Parkinson. A 22 year-old college student named Gena Lee Nolin won the coveted job in early 1994. In the spring of 1995 Nolin was spotted on The Price Is Right by a casting director from the hit show Baywatch and Nolin was offered and accepted a regular role on Baywatch. 29 year-old Cindy Margolis filled in for Nolin while the producers searched for a permanent replacement. In 1995, after 19 years on the show, Holly Hallstrom shot her final episode at the end of July. At that point the production company decided to downsize from 4 models to 3 models, two that wear swimsuits (Kathleen Bradley and Gena Lee Nolin) and one that does not (Janice Pennington). Nolin was permanently replaced by 27 year-old model Chantel Dubay. Dubay left the show in 1999, she was replaced by 29 year-old model Nikki Ziering. In 2000 Janice Pennington and Kathleen Bradley were dismissed and try-out models were used until Pennington and Bradley were replaced by two new Barker's Beauties, Claudia Jordan and Heather Kozar. Ziering and Kozar both left the program in 2002. At this time, Jordan became the only "permanent" model and was joined by a rotating cast of additional models. In 2003 Claudia Jardan left the show.
On October 31, 2006, Bob Barker announced he will step down from his duties and retire following 35 years as the "World Greatest Emcee" of "The Price Is Right" and the face of CBS Daytime. On June 15, 2007 Barker hosted his last episode which aired in both the regular daytime spot and again in primetime as a lead in to The 2007 Daytime Emmy Award Ceremony.
The show originally premiered as "The New Price is Right" however, the "New" was dropped near the end of the first season on July 2, 1973.
The very first one bid prize was a fur coat.
On April 9th 1998, Studio 33 at CBS Television City in Hollywood, where this show is taped was renamed the "Bob Barker Studio" in honor of the program's ceremonial 5000th show and for 'Bob Barker's achievements.
On 24 September 2002, after thirty years with basically the same set design and color scheme, a brand-new look was introduced on the show inspired by the primetime specials, including new door designs and a Hollywood-themed mural on the turntable.
Originally the bonus prize for getting a perfect bid in "One Bid" was $100. On November 12, 1998, it was increased to $500.
Originally in order to win both showcases, the winning bid had to be less than $100 from the actual price without going over. At the beginning of the show's twenty-seventh season, it was changed to $250 or less away.
The top prize slot in the Plinko game was originally $5,000. It was later changed to $10,000.
When the show expanded from a half hour to an hour, the Showcase Showdown was introduced. The three contestants who won their way up on stage during the first half of the show spun a wheel marked with values of 5¢, 10¢, 15¢, etc. through to $1. The objective was the build up a score as close to $1 as possible without going over in one or two spins of the wheel with anything in the second spin being added to the value spun in the first spin. The player who had the score nearest to $1 without going over advanced to the Showcase. As an added bonus, contestants were awarded a $1,000 bonus if they raised $1 in one spin or a combination of two spins in 1975. Later, a bonus spin was added after winning $1,000 for a chance to win an extra $5,000 for landing on either 5¢ or 15¢ spaces adjacent to the $1 space. If they spun $1 in the bonus spin and additional $10,000 was awarded.
The very first pricing game played on the show was "Any Number"; however, all the games were unnamed at this time. This game featured the first car offered and won on the show, which was a 1972 Chevrolet Vega. Its cost was $2,746.
The final three pricing games played on 'Bob Barker''s final show ('Double Prices', 'Grocery Game', and 'Any Number') were the first three games played on his first show, although, in reverse order.
January 17, 1992: Danielle Torres from Pepperdine University became the biggest winner in the show's history winning $88,865 in cash and prizes.
In 1980, pre-"Wheel of Fortune" (1983)Vanna White was a contestant on The Price is Right; however she never made it out of Contestants' Row.
The call for contestants to "Come on down!", popularized by announcer Johnny Olson was ranked #7 in TV Guide's list of "TV's 20 Top Catchphrases" (21-27 August 2005 issue).
Balance Game (II) was the 100th pricing game to debut on the show. The Game made its debut in Season 34.
There are a number of pricing games where, even if you know the prices of all of the items in advance, there is no guarantee you will win. For example, in "Secret X", even if the contestant gets both prices correct, there is only a 2/3 chance of winning the main prize. (One of the reasons "3 Strikes" was changed to have one "strike" chip instead of three was, when there were three strike chips and five digits in the car price, there was a 5/8 chance of losing even if you knew the price of the car in advance.) On the other hand, there are games such as "Hole in One (or Two)" and "Let 'em Roll" where the contestant can win even without getting any prices correct.
The final episode hosted by 'Bob Barker' was recorded on June 6, 2007, and aired on June 15, 2007.
June 6, 2007: 'Bob Barker', in an interview with Entertainment Tonight, stated that he would host another season of TPIR if CBS can't find a replacement by the deadline set. The deadline is unknown to the public. On July 23, 2007, on Late Show with David Letterman, Drew Carey announced that he was chosen to fulfill the duties of Bob Barker as host of "The Price Is Right".
3 November 1975: The Price Is Right expands the series time slot from 30 minutes to a full one hour with the premiere of the Showcase Showdown and the Big Wheel.
15 October 2007: Drew Carey began his hosting duties on the show's 36th season premiere.
Gas Money was the 101th pricing game to debut on the show. It debuted in Season 37.
The Price Is Right hit another milestone in April 1990, the program became the longest running game show in American TV history, surpassing the primetime hit What's My Line? (1950). To date, this is currently the longest running game show in television history.
On many of the Season 26 summer reruns, the replacement copy for the consolation prize plugs is read by Gene Wood.
On the Season 38 summer reruns shown since July 26th 2010, JD Roberto begins doing the promotional consideration plugs that are edited into the reruns in place of the consolation prize plugs.
22 September 1998: Debut of Clearance Sale pricing game.