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Vanna White on 'Wheel of Fortune's' future, Merv Griffin, & her famed dresses

Larry King NowSep 09 '16

The iconic Vanna White opens up to Larry about what keeps her letter-spinning spark alive after more than three decades of 'Wheel of Fortune' fun, her favorite moments as co-host of the longstanding game show, and what it was like to work for the late, great Merv Griffin.

Vanna White, legendary co-host of 'Wheel of Fortune', discusses the past, present, and future of the iconic game show as it enters its 34th season this September. Talking with Larry King, White discusses her friendship with Pat Sajak, her biggest 'Wheel of Fortune' mistake, and the benefits of traveling the country for work.
White gives a behind-the-scenes look at one of America's longest running game shows, explaining how she picks her dresses, why the show switched to digital letters in 1997, and how she got chosen for the original role. She also discusses topics beyond 'Wheel of Fortune', answering questions about her charitable work, best advice she's ever received, and what's on her bucket list.
White and King delve into White's fame, as White reveals the strangest thing a fan has ever asked her, how many other Vannas she has known, and how she felt about references to her in songs by Nelly and Weird Al Yankovic.


*Posted Online on Ora.TV on Sept 9th 2016:

"It entailed, basically I just had to turn letters. That's what I did. And when I got the job I asked Merv, 'Why did you choose me?' And he said 'Because you turned the letters better than anyone else.'" - on her original audition for 'Wheel of Fortune'

"The timing, I guess. It's a half hour, family fun, people are either eating dinner or just finished dinner. It's time to be together and solve puzzles. It just worked." - on what made 'Wheel of Fortune' more successful than expected at night

"It's quite easy because I always have a different dress on, right? The puzzles are always different. So you never know with each show. And the jokes that Pat tells, he keeps me laughing. So it's always a new day, different contestants. And, we don't do it every day. We tape on the average of four days a month." - on how she stays energized despite doing the same thing in every episode

"Since we travel around the country, I'm able to do a lot of things that other people aren't able to do. For example, when we were filming in Seattle, I was on top of the Space Needle where no one can go. Literally, it was about the size of this table and there's a little hatch that you go up and ladder that you climb. And I'm standing on this to do a promo as the helicopter is going around." - on the benefits of filming in cities across the country

"It saved many hours of production. They would have to stop, change the letters manually. So they computerized it so now all I have to do is touch it. Could you believe my job could get any easier?" - on why 'Wheel of Fortune' changed their letter reveal system in 1997

"It was devastating. The puzzle was either Dr. Spock or Mr. Spock. I can't remember because I was so traumatized. And I turned either the D or the M. And it was wrong. And I was like, wait, that's not a D? And they stopped, they threw the puzzle out, and they started another puzzle. So it wasn't that bad." - on the one time she messed up revealing a puzzle

"They are borrowed. What happens is the designers send the clothes to the studio. I wear them--they send about 40, 50 dresses. And we do 12 shows in two days so I pick the top 12 that look the best." - on how she gets the dresses she wears in each episode

"I was at an Easter party and he was there and I went up to him. And I said, 'Did we sit next to each other on an airplane once?' And he said, 'No we did not, it just rhymed. So I used your name.'" - on a conversation with rapper Nelly about his 2000 lyric referencing 'sitting next to Vanna White'

"Yes, I went to school with a girl named Vanna Knight. Can you imagine that? And she was a troublemaker. I would hear, 'Vanna Knight, come to the front office!' And it's like, did they say Vanna Knight or Vanna White?" - on whether she knows anyone else named Vanna

"Just go to, How To Be A Contestant. And, I think it asks you to send in a 60 second or less video of why you want to be a contestant. I think they just want someone who speaks clearly and enjoys the game. And they have to take a written test, fill in then blanks. Just so they know that they can play the game." - on tips to becoming a 'Wheel of Fortune' contestant