When Regis Philbin retired from his daytime talk show, he said that his co-host Kelly Ripa never spoke to him again. He felt there were bad feelings about his retirement and that the show didn’t want anything to do with him after that.
Kelly Ripa never responded to the comments, even after Regis died. However, Kelly has a new book out called Live Wire: Long-Winded Short Stories and she has finally broken her silence on Regis’ claims and revealed her side of the story.
Regis Philbin said Kelly Ripa shut him out after retirement
Regis Philbin worked as a television personality from 1955 until he retired in 2017. He gained national fame with his syndicated talk show Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee, which premiered in 1988. When Katie Lee Gifford left the show in 2001, Kelly Ripa took her place and the show changed to Live! with Regis and Kelly until 2011. When he left the show, Regis said he was retiring and the show became Live! with Kelly at that point.
In an interview in 2017 with Larry King, Regis said that Kelly hadn’t spoken with him in the six years since he left the show. “Never once did they ask me to go back,” Regis revealed. “She got very offended when I left. She thought I was leaving because of her. I was leaving because I was getting older, and it wasn’t right for me anymore.”
This might have seemed shocking, but the man who followed Regis, Michael Strahan, left the show after just four years with Kelly Ripa. At the time he left, Kelly was said to be furious at him leaving. Strahan said in a New York Times Magazine interview that he never felt like he was part of the team on Live!
Kelly Ripa speaks out on Regis Philbin’s comments
Kelly Ripa never talked about what Regis Philbin said, or whether she did shut him out of her life and refused to ask him back onto the show. However, in her new book, Live Wire: Long-Winded Short Stories, Kelly finally broke her silence in a chapter titled, Fool Me Twice.
In an interview with Haute Living, Kelly said it was a hard chapter to write. She also said that her silence was the best way for her to respond to rumors so she didn’t feed the news gossip machine.
“I want people to understand that joining Live, from my perspective, was a terrifying venture. It was entering into a work environment that I did not understand. I think had I gone in there now, I would have been fully equipped to handle it, but back then, I was not equipped in any sense of the word,” Kelly said.
“And therefore, I did not protect myself the way I probably should have. It was a different time, back then. It was a tabloid, journalistic, free-for-all, and there were systems in place there for a long time at the talk show that were not necessarily there to protect me.”
She also said the chapter isn’t just about Regis, but about the misogynistic work culture she endured. With that said, Kelly said she invited Regis to dinner a few times after he retired. She also reminded fans he appeared on a Halloween episode after he retired.
What are your thoughts about Kelly’s reaction to what Regis said about her? Are you interested in reading her new book to hear her side of the story? Let us know in the comments below.
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