|Playboy centerfold appearance|
|Preceded by||Chris Cranston|
|Succeeded by||Lieko English|
|Born||Janice Maurine Pennington|
July 8, 1942
Seattle, Washington, United States
|Height||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|Weight||123 lb (56 kg; 8.8 st)|
Janice Maurine Pennington (born July 8, 1942) is an American former model and was one of the original "Barker's Beauties" models on The Price Is Right, serving as the show's longest-running model, from the show's premiere in 1972 to 2000. She was also Playboy magazine's Playmate of the Month for the May 1971 issue. She is the older sister of fellow model Ann Pennington. Pennington is also the co-founder of the Hollywood Film Festival.
Her second husband was German mountain climber Friedrich "Fritz" Stammberger, who disappeared in Afghanistan in 1975 while mountain climbing. After years of searching, she speculated that Fritz was actually helping the CIA establish mountain bases along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, and had died during a battle with USSR forces. This has never been proven.
For 29 years, Pennington served as a model on The Price Is Right, handing the microphone to Bob Barker at the start of more than 5,000 shows. She also handed off to Dennis James and Tom Kennedy while the show was in syndication in 1972-77 and 1985-86, respectively.
On an syndication Nighttime Episode of The Price Is Right in 1976 during the Cliff Hangers game, host Dennis James had referred to the mountain climber as "Fritz." He was not aware of Pennington's heartbreaking personal crisis as her then second husband, Fritz Stammberger, had disappeared while mountain climbing in Afghanistan in the mid 1970s. The contestant playing Cliff Hangers had lost the game on one of the smaller prizes as the mountain climber fell over the cliff and Dennis shouted out "There Goes Fritz!" which sent a horrified and distraught Janice running and remaining backstage crying, she did not appear on camera nor on air for the remainder of the episode. Because of this incident, it was speculated that this was the reason that it led to Dennis ultimately being dismissed from his hosting duties come 1977 (with Bob Barker taking over afterwards until the cancellation in 1980) ; however, the real reason for James's departure was that his five-year contract with the show had expired in 1977 and was not renewed, in favor of Barker.
This may also explain why Pennington was never present on stage with the game modeling the three smaller prizes on the daytime show, with the exception of one time in November 1993.
In June 1988, a camera hit Pennington and she fell off the stage. She was unconscious and was taken to a hospital; taping of the episode resumed after 45 minutes. Pennington's resulting surgery left her with scars and one shoulder shorter than the other, so she could no longer wear swimsuits on the show. A substitute model filled in for her briefly during that time.
When Pearson Television took over the show on October 19, 2000, Pennington's employment ended the following year in 2001 following taping of the December 13, 2000 episode. She signed a confidential settlement agreement.