‘Pyramid’ Turns 50: See Every Host Who Has Emceed the Game Show

Dick Clark and Michael Strahan of 'The $100,000 Pyramid'
Bob Stewart Prod./Courtesy: Everett Collection, Christopher Willard/ABC

Fifty years after the Pyramid format first hit television, not much has changed in the game show’s playstyle, apart from the top prize.

“For a lot of people, it used to be The $25,000 Pyramid, so obviously inflation has pumped it up!” Michael Strahan quipped to TV Insider in 2016, when he began hosting The $100,000 Pyramid.

Strahan is right, of course, but the prize was even lower when the format debuted on TV on March 26, 1973. At the time, the show was titled The $10,000 Pyramid, and it was Dick Clark who was the master of ceremonies.

Since then, as Pyramid shows have come and gone on broadcast TV and syndication, four other TV hosts have served as emcee. Scroll down to read about Clark, Strahan, and the other Pyramid hosts.

Dick Clark of 'The (New) $25,000 Pyramid'
CBS Television/Courtesy: Everett Collection

Dick Clark

Clark, who died in 2012 at age 82, hosted The $10,000 Pyramid when it premiered on CBS in 1973 and followed the game show as it moved to ABC and changed titles to become The $20,000 Pyramid before coming to an end in 1980. But that wasn’t all: He later hosted The (New) $25,000 Pyramid on CBS between 1982 and 1988, and he emceed two syndicated versions of the game show: The $50,000 Pyramid in 1981 and The $100,000 Pyramid from 1985 to 1988.

“It was a very frenetic, exciting game,” Clark said in a 1999 Archive of American Television interview. “And I’m just calmly walking through, quietly conducting.”

Bill Cullen
Everett Collection

Bill Cullen

Bill Cullen, who was also the original Price Is Right emcee and the so-called “Dean of Game Show Hosts,” hosted The $25,000 Pyramid in nighttime syndication from 1974 to 1979 while Clark handled the daytime version of the show. In a 1998 interview, Pyramid and Price Is Right creator Bob Stewart said he and Cullen — who died in 1990 at age 70 — became the best of friends. “Bill was everybody’s brother,” Stewart added. “He was your kid brother, he was the guy you loved to be with in high school, he was the guy next door.”

John Davidson of 'The $100,000 Pyramid'
Everett Collection

John Davidson

After hosting the That’s Incredible! and Hollywood Squares in the 1980s, John Davidson hosted the brief weekday show The $100,000 Pyramid in syndication in 1991. “It’s not so much intelligence, it’s a way of thinking,” he said of the show, talking to The Washington Post in 1991. “There are certain people who can do it and certain people who can’t.”

Donny Osmond
Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Donny Osmond

Donny Osmond hosted a syndicated version of the game show, simply titled Pyramid, between 2002 and 2004, as Friends fans might recall. (Matt LeBlanc’s Joey had an ill-fated Pyramid appearance in a Season 10 episode of that NBC sitcom.) And Clark gave Osmond some words of encouragement, as the former teen idol told Tampa Bay Times in 2003.

“I was a little apprehensive,” Osmond recalled. “So he called me up in my dressing room just before I went on stage. And he said two words: ‘Have fun.’ I thought, that’s too simplistic. But after doing the show for a year, that’s exactly the secret. Just enjoy what you do.”

Mike Richards
Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Mike Richards

After his stint as a vice president of Dick Clark Productions — but long before his controversy-ridden time as Jeopardy! host and executive producer — Mike Richards hosted Game Show Network’s brief 2012 version, titled The Pyramid.

“I was fortunate to work alongside Dick Clark for many years,” Richards said after landing the Pyramid gig, per Deadline. “Not only was he one of the most respected game show hosts of all time, but he served as my mentor, and it’s an honor to follow in his footsteps. This is an iconic game show that I grew up watching.”

Michael Strahan of 'The $100,000 Pyramid'
Christopher Willard/ABC

Michael Strahan

Since 2016, Strahan has been hosting The $100,000 Pyramid, a primetime version of the game show that ABC airs during summer months. “It’s such a perfect format for a show, and it’s so easy to pick up on that everybody can relate to it,” the Good Morning America host told TV Insider when he started his Pyramid job. “People love to see celebrities and contestants become a team where they have to work together and not just for themselves. Once you start watching it, it’s very addictive.”