Regis Philbin's decision to “retire” from his television show “Live! With Regis & Kelly” was apparently prompted by financial issues, not by his advanced age.
TMZ reported over the weekend that the 79-year-old TV host was incensed that his new contract would include a mandatory reduction in salary. (Philbin reportedly earns between $18- and $20-million per year). The show’s producers inserted the lower salary in his contract due to the show’s falling ratings and to Philbin’s frequent absences.
TMZ also reported that Kelly Ripa, Philbin’s co-host, was surprised and “furious” over his abrupt decision to quit.
Philbin also reported fired his agent of 30 years, Jim Griffin, for allowing the pay cut in his contract.