Robert William "Bob" Barker (born December 12, 1923) is a former American television game show host. He is best known for hosting CBS's The Price Is Right from 1972 to 2007, making it the longest-running daytime game show in North American television history, and for hosting Truth or Consequences from 1956 to 1975.
He’s spoken out against animal abuse in the entertainment industry, protested against fur farms and lobbied Congress on behalf of circus animals. And for the past 20 years, he’s ended every Price is Right show with a message urging people to spay and neuter their pets.
He's just looking for someone who's in a good mood that day. Someone he thinks I can have fun with. And I've been working with both these producers for so long, they know what I like. And they pick excellent contestants.
And you asked me why our show's been popular for so long. A point I think is the selection of the contestants.
Is famously an animal-rights activist, and once refused to host the Miss USA Pageant when he learned that fur coats were part of the prize package.
Drew Carey, 49, promised Barker that he would continue Barker's signature sign-off: "Help control the pet population. Have your pet spayed or neutered."
"I was delighted," says Barker, 83. "I was going to approach him about doing that, but I didn't have to. He volunteered. He certainly sounded like an animal lover. I thanked him profusely."
“As I became more involved, I began to be aware—far beyond anything I had known before—of the terrible exploitation of animals,” says Barker. “I just felt compelled to do what I could to rectify the situation, and that’s what I’ve been doing ever since.”
Having won a total of 15 Emmy Awards including the Lifetime Achievement Emmy Award for Daytime Television, Barker also received the coveted Carbon Mike Award of the Pioneer Broadcasters and was named the most popular game show host of all time in a national poll.
Barker has been twice named in the Guinness Book of World Records as television's "Most Durable Performer," at 3,524 shows, and "Most Generous Host in Television history" for awarding $55 million in prizes on his various shows. During the ensuing years the $55-million figure has increased to more than $200 million.
He said, Bob, you've got to get out there and do that show. Well I knew the show. I had heard it day after day for weeks. But I had never -- I'd never even been in a school play. I had never been before an audience.
But I got in there, and before I could get scared, I'm doing it. And I talked with this contestant. And I got a laugh, and I thought that's beautiful. I'm going to try to get that audience to do that again. And I've been doing that ever since.
Barker never lost his utterly natural charm or self-effacing people skills. Quick-witted but never showy, mocking but never cruel, warm but never maudlin, Barker may have let his hair go white (with the network's approval), but he never aged.
Before I did Truth or Consequences for the first time, Ralph told me, “Bob, you are the star of this show now. Go out there and do it your way. Don’t imitate me or anyone else. Do it Bob Barker’s way.”
He was given his own radio show, The Bob Barker Show, which ran for the next six years out of Burbank.
In 1956, he was hired to host the daytime television version of the long-running radio quiz show, Truth and Consequences, on NBC. The program, which forced its contestants to perform bizarre stunts if they failed to answer a question within about one second, was syndicated in 1966
Three elephants will travel from the Toronto Zoo to a sanctuary in California aboard a private plane thanks to longtime animal activist Bob Barker.
Not only is it the highest-rated daytime game show, it's also the longest-running game show in TV history, surpassing the prime-time hit "What's My Line?" (1950), which ran for 18 years.
In addition to his claim to fame in "The Price is Right", 1996 became a big year for Barker. Not only did he make a cameo in Adam Sandler's "Happy Gilmore", but Barker also played Mel Harris's father in NBC's "Something So Right".
He left school in 1943 to train as a fighter pilot in the United States Naval Reserve, but World War II ended before he was given an assignment for active duty.
I did Truth or Consequences for eighteen years. I've done Price Is Right for thirty-five years. I did Miss USA and Miss Universe for twenty-one years. I did the Rose Parade for twenty-one years, and I did the Pillsbury Bake-Off for fifteen years. I did the Indianapolis 500 parade for twenty years. I'm a guy who's kept a job once he got it.