Kelly Ripa gives a big admission about the decision to join Live and knowing the truth may have led to a different future

KELLY Ripa gave a huge admission about her decision to join Live – and knowing the truth may have led to a very different future for the host.

The 52-year-old joined Live – which later became Live with Regis and Kelly – in 2001 after Regis Philbin’s longtime co-host Kathie Lee Gifford left the year before.

Kelly Ripa, 52, looked back on her long career on television in a recent appearance on a podcast

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Kelly Ripa, 52, looked back on her long career on television in a recent appearance on a podcastPhoto credit: Getty
Kelly co-hosted Live with Regis and Kelly with Regis Philbin from 2001-2011

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Kelly co-hosted Live with Regis and Kelly with Regis Philbin from 2001-2011Credit: AP

But while speaking on an episode of the Not Skinny But Not Fat podcast, Kelly looked back on her long career on television and the decision that led her to join Regis on Live.

“If you’re a new person joining an established show and a well-oiled machine and if you’re reading the book [her memoir Live Wire]you know that. I’m with him in this whole fight,” she said.

“He shouldn’t have let himself be assigned a host. That’s not fair. He paid his dues and started this show, and I really champion him in this book.”

Kelly added that it’s difficult to bring “two strangers from two completely different generations” together on a show of this size.

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“It’s like very, very different people come together in this workplace and I felt for him because he was so famous and so established.”

When she got the job, Kelly revealed that she thought she was “just filling in for the day” and initially thought she was “auditing for the show.”

“I’ve been told that, and I’ve been told they’re not looking for a host. And I thought, ‘No problem. I already have a job. I’m very overwhelmed the way it is,'” she said.

“I have a toddler. I was pregnant – nobody knew that. It’s like all of these things are happening in my head. I was trying to find a way to get off camera and stay there because I had my hands full. I really had my hands full and didn’t want to go through it all again.”

Kelly believed she was “handed” the opportunity, and said it was “a very disturbing situation to be in.”

“I have no expertise in this field, but when has that ever stopped me? But I was really very insecure about my own abilities, but I was overly sensitive to the feelings around me that this was like new and unusual territory that I was venturing into,” she said.

“I couldn’t tell exactly. It wasn’t until I was told between these two fighting forces within the company that I didn’t even know they existed. I was so ignorant. I was just an actor on a soap opera. I didn’t know anything about it.”

Kelly said she “couldn’t answer” whether Regis, who died in 2020 at the age of 88, would have preferred to host the show alone, but believed “he certainly didn’t need me there.”

She said she felt like she didn’t add anything to Regis at first, but realized how people “connected” to her.”

Kelly admitted her fate on the show would have been very different had she known about the behind-the-scenes issues beforehand.

“I wouldn’t have done it. No,” she said.

“If I had known I was going in, I wouldn’t have done it. And how sad for me. How sad for me. Fortunately, ignorance is bliss…this saying is true. Ignorance is bliss. Little did I know there was so much fighting between these two factions and that I was considered a network girl, which is so ridiculous.

“I was part of a 40-person cast that was cast on a soap opera. So I didn’t think of myself as anything of anything. I only considered myself an actor.”

She believes the reason audiences embraced her was because she was struggling very publicly at the time.

“And maybe people didn’t recognize it as a struggle, but they recognized something in themselves that they saw in me — a person who was really, really insecure about what they were doing,” Kelly said.

Regis left the show in 2011 after 24 seasons and his eventual successor, after a long search, was Michael Strahan, 50, in 2012.

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However, the former NFL athlete shockingly left the series in 2016 for Good Morning America.

Kelly now hosts the morning show with Ryan Seacrest. Live with Kelly and Ryan airs weekdays.

Michael Strahan replaced Regis in 2012 but abruptly left the program in 2016

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Michael Strahan replaced Regis in 2012 but abruptly left the program in 2016Photo credit: Getty
She now hosts Live with Kelly and Ryan with Ryan Seacrest

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She now hosts Live with Kelly and Ryan with Ryan SeacrestPhoto credit: Getty

https://www.the-sun.com/entertainment/6480383/kelly-ripa-live-regis-philbin-admission-host/ Kelly Ripa gives a big admission about the decision to join Live and knowing the truth may have led to a different future

DevanCole

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