Ryan Seacrest Responds to Worried Fans After Slurring Words on ‘American Idol’ Finale: He’s ‘in Need of Rest’

A-OK. Ryan Seacrest had fans worried after the Sunday, May 17, American Idol finale, in which he slightly slurred his words and his right eye appeared larger than his left. Fans quickly took to Twitter with concern, asking if the longtime host, 45, was OK.

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That concern grew during the Monday, May 18, episode of Live With Kelly and Ryan, when he did not join Kelly Ripa as cohost — her husband, Mark Consuelos, filled in. “Ryan worked late last night on American Idol, so he’s taking the morning off,” Ripa, 49, said on the show.

However, he’s simply exhausted, Us Weekly confirmed.

Ryan Seacrest Skips Live With Kelly and Ryan After American Idol Finale
Ryan Seacrest ABC

“Ryan did not have any kind of stroke last night,” his publicist said in a statement to People magazine on Monday. “Like many people right now, Ryan is adjusting to the new normal and finding work-home balance, with the added stress of having to put on live shows from home.”

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The rep added: “Between Live With Kelly and Ryan, American Idol, On Air With Ryan Seacrest, and the Disney Family Singalong specials, he has been juggling three-four on-air jobs over the last few weeks and he’s in need of rest. So today he took a well-deserved day off.”

Although the finale lacked the usual glitz and glam that Idol usually includes, judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie all gave feedback from home as the singers set up performances from their locations around the country.

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In the end, Seacrest announced that Just Sam was the season 18 winner from home. He struggled to communicate with Sam (whose real name is Samantha Diaz), who was also on FaceTime with her grandmother, but was able to congratulate her before that part of the show came to end. Sam then joined the judges and 11 other Idol alums to perform “We Are the World,” the hit song cowritten by Richie, 70, alongside Michael Jackson.

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