Kelly Ripa has not yet found a new “Live! With Kelly” co-host to replace Michael Strahan.
“Live! With Kelly” returned for a new season on Tuesday, and viewers were expecting Ripa to reveal her new co-host the following day. However, it looks like the host is not yet ready to have one permanent partner on the show, according to an insider.
A “Live! With Kelly” insider told Entertainment Tonight on Thursday, Sept. 8 that Ripa has decided to continue having guest stars co-host the show with her for now and to take her time finding a replacement for Strahan. "The show is going to stick to doing a round robin shuffle of guest co-hosts for the time being. Kelly likes the dynamic right now, so they’re not in a hurry to make a decision anymore,” the source dished, adding that Ripa may not name a new permanent co-host until November.
A rep for “Live!” explained Ripa’s decision to continue inviting guest co-hosts, revealing that this doesn’t mean she wants to forgo having a permanent partner altogether. “Kelly has always said that she wants a partner, and that hasn't changed. There is no timeframe for the co-host announcement, so there's nothing to postpone,” the spokesperson told the publication.
For now, Ripa, who was recently promoted to executive producer of the show, is giving one lucky viewer a chance to co-host an episode of “Live!” with her. “Now it's time to put your mouths where your thumbs are," she announced on Wednesday’s broadcast of the show, before quipping that she’s read some comments on social media saying anyone can do her job. “I'm building a co-host empire.”
In May, Ripa’s former co-host Strahan left “Live!” and joined Robin Roberts, George Stephanopoulos and the rest of the “Good Morning America” team as a full-time co-anchor. He made his debut on the daytime talk show on Tuesday, Sept. 6.
When he was asked about his drama with “Live!” and Ripa, Strahan explained that he has moved on from it. As for his replacement on the show, the former NFL star only said, “I haven't seen it. I wouldn't be able to tell you.”
Since Strahan’s exit from the show, Ripa has co-hosted “Live!” with several celebrities including Rob Lowe, Andy Cohen, Fred Savage, Morris Chestnut, Anderson Cooper, Carrie Ann Inaba and Jimmy Kimmel.