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Sunnyside Mom on Jeopardy! Episode Airs Tuesday
Sunnyside resident and Jeopardy! contestant Anna Paone (R) with host Ken Jennings.

Admit it: You want to be on Jeopardy!

Even if you’re not a diehard fan and have only seen it a handful of times, you’ve played along in your head – or even out loud – answering questions in the form of a question, imagining yourself showing off your vast knowledge of useless information.

Anna Paone of Sunnyside made that fantasy come true. This spring she was a contestant on the legendary game show shot on the Sony lot in Culver City, California, and her episode will air on July 9.

Paone, 33, is married with a daughter who will be two in a few weeks, but she has been a fan of the show since she was a child in New Jersey.

“I have fond memories of watching it from a young age,” Paone said. “I particularly remember watching in 2004 a lot of Ken Jennings’ original championship, 74-game run and so it was very exciting for me to meet him now that he’s the host.”

In 2017, Paone took an online test, the first step in the audition process, but did not make the cut.

It was persistent encouragement from her husband that made her give it another try in 2022.

This time she made the grade. Two auditions then followed the test via videoconferencing.

In April of this year, the phone rang.

“It was very exciting because my baby was napping, and I got a call from a 310 number, and it said, ’Sony Pictures Studios’ and so at first I was like, ’Oh,’ my immediate instinct was, ’Oh, she’s napping. Whoever this is can leave a voicemail.’ And then I thought, ’Oh, duh! It’s Sony Pictures Studios, and it’s 310, of course, it’s gotta be Jeopardy; I’ve gotta pick up.’”

After she was told the good news, “I was grinning ear-to-ear,” she said.

Paone shot the episode in May.

“I was really, really nervous,” she said, “but I tried to get into the mindset of ’I’m just here to have fun.’”

Paone had to pay for her flight and accommodations, but the production company fed her lunch in the Sony commissary. She could not elaborate on the details of the episode before it aired.

Paone offered this advice for contestant wannabees: “Just take the test. Take the anytime test. You can do it anytime on your computer. There’s no risk. Just have fun and do it,” she said. “I really think everybody who wants to should give it a try.”

Paone’s episode will air at 7 p.m. on WABC-7 on Tuesday, July 9.

Source: Particle News