So, who will be her new morning buddy? Ryan Seacrest!
“So happy! So exciting!” Seacrest, 42, said, as he joined Ripa, 46, in the studio.
“Take a bow! Take a bow!” Ripa chimed in. Watch her announce Seacrest in the video above!
Over the weekend, Ripa teased the announcement on social media. “We’re going to need a bigger mug,” she captioned a video of herself taking a swig out of a mug that read “Live with Kelly & ?.” She added: “#TuneInToLive #BigAnnouncement #LiveKellyCohost.”
Seacrest is used to hosting. He previously took center stage on American Idol for 15 seasons, and his resume also includes New Year’s Rockin’ Eve and his radio show On Air with Ryan Seacrest. Additionally, he guest-hosted Live! several times this past year during the show’s search to find Ripa a new TV partner.
In April 2016, Ripa was blindsided when Strahan, 45, exited the ABC daytime talk show for a full-time gig at Good Morning America. As Us Weekly reported at the time, Ripa was told about the switch-up just hours before the public found out. Ripa took a prescheduled vacation amid the mess and addressed her absence the following week.
“I gained some perspective. I always speak from the heart. I didn’t want to come out here and just, like, say something I might regret,” she said that April. “So what transpired though over the course of a few days has been extraordinary in the sense that it started a much greater conversation about communication and consideration and, most importantly, respect in the workplace.”
Strahan left the show on May 13, months before the date that was initially scheduled. “For me, I don’t look at it as if I’m leaving one show in a lurch. I look at it as if, ‘You know what? I’m needed in this part of the family for now,'” the former NFL player said during his first day on GMA. “I think it’s just unfortunate how everything seems to be for a lot of people outside, because everyone has an opinion, without understanding what’s going on and that’s why. … You take the high road. If you argue with somebody who doesn’t know what they’re talking about and people see you arguing, they don’t know who’s the fool.”