Bob Barker — host of “The Price Is Right” for 35 years — dies just short of his 100th birthday

 Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic
Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic

Months short of his December 12th birthday — which would have been his 100th — Bob Barker, host of "The Price Is Right" for 35 years, has passed away.

Roger Neal, who served as Barker's publicist from 1987 to 1994 and again from 2020, broke the news in a statement obtained from NBC News, saying, "It is with profound sadness that we announce that the World's Greatest MC who ever lived . . . has left us." According to representatives for the iconic game show host, he died peacefully at his home in L.A. on Saturday morning from what's presumed to be natural causes, although exact details have yet to be disclosed.

In 1996, Barker made a memorable cameo in the comedy film, "Happy Gilmore," playing outside the happy-go-lucky personality he was known to have by portraying a rough-and-tumble version of himself, engaging in a fight with co-star Adam Sandler during a golf tournament. In a recent feature from Collider, Sandler discusses how that casting came to be, saying, "We… and Bob knows this. We initially wrote it for Ed McMahon. Ed McMahon said he was busy and we were like, imagine if Bob Barker did it, he'll never do it. Next thing you know, Bob Barker, whose neighbor was Chuck Norris at the time and Chuck and Bob used to spar, was like, 'Yeah, if I get to fight, if I get to throw punches, I'm doing it.'"

Shortly after the news of Barker's death, CBS issued the following statement: "We lost a beloved member of the CBS family today with the passing of Bob Barker. During his 35 years as host of THE PRICE IS RIGHT, Bob made countless people's dreams come true and everyone feel like a winner when they were called to 'come on down.' In addition to his legendary 50-year career in broadcasting, Bob will be remembered as a dedicated animal rights activist. Daytime television has lost one of its most iconic stars."