A Tribute To Gene Wood: Announcing Legend [VIDEO]
My kids and I were watching Family Feud yesterday, and I couldn't help but notice how the announcer on the new episodes doesn't hold a candle to the show's original announcer, the legendary Gene Wood.
The current announcer, Joey Fatone, is best known as a member of boy band 'Nsync. While he may be able to sing, he doesn't have the spontaneity, humor and charm as his predecessor.
Gene Wood, born in 1925, began his run in the Game Show industry as host of Beat The Clock in the 1960s. He became a staple of the Goodson-Toddman game show catalog from the 1960s through the 1990s. You've heard his emphatic voice on great game shows like Family Feud, Card Sharks, Beat The Clock, Password and Super Password.
After Johnny Olson's death in 1985, Gene was one of four interim announcers on the daytime version of The Price Is Right with Bob Barker, and was the regular announcer on the night-time version with Tom Kennedy. Of all 17 shows on which he served as announcer, he is most recognized for his legendary line "On your marks, let's start the Family Feud!" from 1976 to 1994.
Gene wasn't just a first-class announcer, he also performed comedy sketches to warm up audiences. Not to mention, he had a great sense of humor during a few episode where he made an on camera appearance.
Gene retired from Game Show announcing in 1996, but continued to do voice-overs for Game Show Network until 1998. After that, Wood retired to Adamsville, Rhode Island. Sadly, he died of lung cancer in Boston, Massachusetts on May 21, 2004.