The Hamilton Spectator - - GO - EMILY YAHR Wash­ing­ton Post

We’re about to have a lot more Ryan Seacrest in our lives.

On Mon­day morn­ing, ABC host Kelly Ripa an­nounced that Seacrest — for­mer “Amer­i­can Idol” host — is her new per­ma­nent co­host on “Live,” the sec­ond-most­watched day­time show on TV.

Seacrest beamed as he walked into the stu­dio with Ripa, hug­ging au­di­ence mem­bers, as a TV graphic in­tro­duced the show’s new ti­tle: “Live with Kelly & Ryan.”

“Today, the next chap­ter of the ‘Live’ story is about to be writ­ten,” Ripa said, as the au­di­ence cheered. Ripa has helmed the talk show with a con­stantly ro­tat­ing set of guest co-hosts since last May, when Michael Stra­han de­parted for “Good Morn­ing Amer­ica.”

Though Seacrest has been based in Los An­ge­les, where he hosts a syn­di­cated morn­ing ra­dio show, he said on “Live” that he’s mov­ing to New York. In a news re­lease, Dis­ney-ABC con­firmed that Seacrest will not give up his ra­dio gig and will work out of new stu­dios in New York. This means that, in ad­di­tion to “Live” ev­ery week­day morn­ing, Seacrest will be:

• On the ra­dio ev­ery day, host­ing “On Air With Ryan Seacrest” on week­days and “Amer­i­can Top 40” on the week­ends.

• On the E! red car­pet, talk­ing to celebri­ties be­fore all the awards shows.

• On ABC’s “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest” on Dec. 31.

• Be­hind the scenes on the en­tire E! Kar­dashian em­pire, which he ex­ec­u­tive-pro­duces, along with a slew of other shows, in­clud­ing Jen­nifer Lopez’s NBC drama “Shades of Blue.”

... and do­ing much more. Seacrest’s packed sched­ule didn’t come up dur­ing Mon­day’s “Live” broad­cast. He had a rel­a­tively lowkey wel­come as he and Ripa ban­tered about Seacrest’s up­com­ing move to New York and about the re­ac­tion from his close friends when he texted them that he had “great news.” (Guesses ranged from “You’re en­gaged!” to “You’re hav­ing a baby!” to “You’re com­ing out of the closet!”)

Seacrest has ap­peared on “Live” many times over the years, serv­ing as guest co-host on mul­ti­ple oc­ca­sions. He has known Ripa since the days when they hosted the Dis­ney Christ­mas Day Pa­rade to­gether a decade ago.

“With Ryan, ‘Live’ has a new co­host who is a mas­ter of live TV, as well as a ter­rific in­ter­viewer with tens of thou­sands of hours of live broad­cast­ing ex­pe­ri­ence,” long­time “Live” pro­ducer Michael Gel­man said in a state­ment. “When you com­bine those at­tributes with the tal­ents and ex­pe­ri­ence of the in­com­pa­ra­ble Kelly Ripa, you have two skilled and en­ter­tain­ing broad­cast­ers with great chem­istry. Add in an ex­pe­ri­enced pro­duc­tion team and a suc­cess­ful 30year fran­chise, and you have the per­fect com­bi­na­tion.”

The pair­ing is also no­table be­cause start­ing this fall, it will go up against for­mer Fox host Megyn Kelly’s new, much-an­tic­i­pated 9 a.m. ET show on NBC, which means we’re in for an­other dose of morn­ing talk show wars be­tween NBC and ABC, al­ready in the race for rat­ings with ri­vals “Today” and “Good Morn­ing Amer­ica.”

Up un­til now, spec­u­la­tion about Ripa’s new co-host — one of the high­est-pro­file jobs in TV — was a pop­u­lar topic. The an­nounce­ment comes af­ter a nearly year-long search process. Stra­han co-hosted “Live” from Fe­bru­ary 2012 through May 2016. Pre­vi­ously, Ripa was part­nered up with Regis Philbin, who was the host from April 1983 through Novem­ber 2011.

Stra­han’s de­par­ture started a rare bit of con­tro­versy sur­round­ing “Live.” Af­ter Ripa was no­ti­fied about Stra­han’s new job only shortly be­fore the rest of the world, she stayed home from work for a cou­ple days as re­ports swirled that she felt “blind­sided” by the news and what it meant for the show. When Ripa re­turned to the show, she de­liv­ered a can­did mono­logue: She said that she had needed some time to “gather her thoughts” but had been as­sured by Dis­ney-ABC ex­ec­u­tives that “Live” was a pri­or­ity to the com­pany.


A new era in day­time tele­vi­sion be­gan Mon­day when Kelly Ripa in­tro­duced Ryan Seacrest as the per­ma­nent co-host join­ing her on "Live."

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