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NEW YORK — “Live” with Kelly Ripa has finally ended its search for a new co-host after nearly a year.
Ryan Seacrest announced that he was joining the morning chat show “Live” with Ripa on Monday as Michael Strahan’s successor.
“Nice to see you, partner,” Seacrest said as he walked onto the New York set of the show made famous by Regis Philbin.
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Seacrest, 42, is a busy show-biz presence, hosting ABC’s New Year’s Eve show, red carpet coverage on E! Entertainment and a daily Los Angeles-based radio show. He has his own production company. But the ending of “American Idol” gave that show’s host less of a regular television presence.
He’ll move to New York for the new job, although he will continue his radio show.
The announcement came a year after Strahan exited the show for “Good Morning America.” The way that departure was handled so annoyed Ripa that she skipped the show for two days in protest and Strahan left the show earlier than expected. Ripa was angry that she was given virtually no notice; her absence and ensuing drama forced Disney execs to apologize to her.
Since then, she’s worked with a series of guest co-hosts like Jerry O’Connell, Fred Savage, Andy Cohen and even her husband Mark Consuelos. The uncertainty stretched on for so long it led some to wonder whether Ripa really wanted to go it alone.
“Ryan is a close friend and his star shines as brightly off camera as it does on,” Ripa said. “His tremendous success is only matched by his impeccable reputation. Plainly said, everyone loves him, and so will our daily viewers.”
Seacrest, who had been one of the guest co-hosts, called Ripa “a dream broadcast partner.”
“Thank you for uprooting your life,” Ripa added. “Welcome to the family.”
They moved quickly into the rhythms of the morning show, with a freewheeling discussion that included Ripa’s revelation of when she last had sex. Actor Chris Pratt was the first guest, and he carried balloons and roses onstage to give to the new broadcast team.
“No better way to celebrate this epic moment then to deliver flowers your P.A. gave to me,” he said.
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Source: CBS News – Entertainment