Kelly Ripa

Kelly Ripa Co-Host Search Continues, Jerry O’Connell Says He’s Willing To Step In

The Kelly Ripa co-host job remains up for grab. ABC’s delay in choosing a permanent replacement for Michael Strahan has led to months of speculation and a long list of celebrity guest co-hosts on Live!

Actor Jerry O’Connell is among a few personalities who have appeared several times on Live! to co-host alongside Ripa. CNN’s Anderson Cooper and Bravo host Andy Cohen have also been frequent guest co-hosts at the long-running show.

During a recent interview with E! News, O’Connell said there is no need for ABC to rush to pick someone to be Kelly Ripa’s co-host on a permanent basis because she’s doing a good job.

“I’m obviously not a boss over there. But I can say from everything that I’ve heard that they’re not ready to make any sort of decision on a co-host on Live! With Kelly yet,” O’Connell said. “And you know what? Let them take their time.”

“Kelly’s fine by herself. Kelly does a great job. I watch every day and Kelly’s great,” he added.

 Jerry O'Connell, Kelly Ripa
Jerry O’Connell and Kelly Ripa. [Image by RW/MediaPunch/IPX]

The 42-year-old former Sliders star also said he is willing to serve as Kelly Ripa’s co-host on Live! anytime. O’Connell joked that she calls him when there is a problem with another guest co-host.

“Kelly calls me when somebody backs out. If there is some sort of emergency Real Housewives situation that [Andy Cohen] has to fly off to, that’s when they call me; I’m like the substitute teacher,” he said. “If Anderson Cooper has to fly to the Middle East because there’s some crisis, that’s when they call me up.”

O’Connell, who also professed his love for Live!, said that he is a “proud substitute” guest co-host of the show.

“I love [Kelly]. I love that whole show. I’m proud to say I’m their substitute.”

This is not the first time O’Connell has expressed his willingness to be Kelly Ripa’s co-host and his admiration for her. In November 2016, he said he would do whatever Ripa wanted him to.

“She’s number one, she’s the best, she’s beautiful, she’s funny, and as a parent, she’s inspiring,” O’Connell said. “Whatever Kelly wanted me to do, I would do it, if she needed me a couple of days a week, I would help her out.”

O’Connell, who recently hosted the American Kennel Club National Championship presented by Royal Canin, also said Kelly Ripa is a good dancer, AOL reported. He revealed that Ripa’s dancing moves made him want to “take a hip-hop class.”

“Kelly is a really good dancer! She had this whole routine choreographed with other dancers. When I got there I was like — ‘I need to take a hip-hop class because this girl is good!'”

O’Connell is not the first celebrity to talk about Kelly Ripa’s good dancing skills this month.

Kelly Ripa
Kelly Ripa. [Image by Mike Coppola/Getty Images]

Dancing with the Stars’ long-time judge Carrie Ann Inaba recently told Closer Weekly that she thinks Ripa would not only win but put everybody to shame if she decided to compete in the ABC dance show.

“I would love to have her on the show!” Carrie Ann said. “But she always tells me, ‘Oh, I would put everybody to shame!’ And I believe she would because I know that she’s so physically fit, she’s such a fantastic athlete and she’s so musical, and she’s a great performer, and she’s funny – all of the qualities that could make her a winner.”

Despite Carrie Ann’s excitement, it is unlikely that Ripa would join the upcoming 24th season of Dancing with the Stars, which is scheduled to premiere on March 20.

Could O’Connell be the long-sought permanent Kelly Ripa co-host?

[Featured Image by Mike Coppola/Getty Images]