Has Kelly Ripa found a new co-host, and is she ready to finally announce their name?
Just yesterday, Kelly Ripa claimed that she loves the rotating co-hosts for Live With Kelly, but is it possible that this is giving her the excuse to wait for her top co-host choice? Kelly spoke with People about her rotating co-hosts.
“It’s fun, it’s energizing. It’s what we do best. And I think that it’s been a blast. I love it. I know our production team loves it and I know the audience loves it.”
Most importantly, Kelly says that her part is to “make it my job to click with everybody.”
Not only does the audience love the rotating co-hosts, the visiting co-hosts are certainly keen to join such a high-profile, lucrative broadcasting gig.
A co-host job with Kelly Ripa is not just about instantly gaining name recognition as the name of the show includes the names of both co-hosts. A gig as a Live With Kelly co-host also means lucrative endorsements. As reported by the Inquisitr, Michael Strahan had to give up his many lucrative endorsements when he left Live with Kelly and Michael for Good Morning America. Not every television show allows hosts to endorse products as Live does. When Strahan went to GMA, which is under the ABC News umbrella, he was now legally working under a clause that banned any sort of endorsement by a host.
Some of the recent substitute co-hosts are already removed from the list. An insider has made it clear that Rob Lowe, Jeff Gordon and Mario Lopez are definitely not on the co-host short list.
“It’s a highly coveted job. There’s no other show where the co-host gets to have their name in the title of the show — you don’t get that kind of prominence. That’s why they’re leveraging. Just being in the mix is helpful to their careers and reputation. Well, Rob, Jeff and Mario are not getting the job.”
This is no surprise to fans of Live With Kelly that have been following the rotating co-host merry-go-round. Earlier in July, Rob Lowe signed on with the television show Code Black. While Rob certainly could find a way to squeeze in time for Live With Kelly, this is not the sort of part-time commitment that Kelly Ripa wants. She just shared Michael Strahan with Good Morning America and in the end, she wound up without a co-host.
This could also be said of former racing great Jeff Gordon. He is currently doing a cornucopia of ambitious broadcast gigs that are sure to eventually land him in a more prominent full-time role in the racing or sport’s world. Again, Kelly Ripa does not want Live to just be a stepping stone in Gordon’s television career.
Hunky Mario Lopez is another fan favorite, but his commitment to Extra as well as a variety of other projects may be one reason that he is no longer in the mix. The Inquisitr previously reported that Mario’s appearance on Ellen seemed like he was confirming that he had the Live with Kelly job.
Most of all, the Live With Kelly insider did not elaborate on Lowe, Gordon, and Lopez individually, they certainly insinuated that the Live With Kelly position is not a career stepping stone. This is a marriage where both co-hosts are committed to the show.
“After the whole thing with Michael, [the producers] want someone loyal. They want someone who is going to be in it long-term. They don’t want a self-promoter and to [have to] be doing this whole thing again in a year.”
Since late April, when Ripa was “blindsided” and “disrespected” by Strahan’s departure, she has desperately wanted to work with one of her best friends. She will really not be appeased unless she is working with either Andy Cohen or Anderson Cooper. She knows and trusts both of these hosts -they are her friends. And ultimately, trust is the issue for Kelly Ripa. She knows that either of these two hosts are her choice for co-host.
This leads to the insider’s most shocking revelation. Since Strahan’s departure, the insiders have revealed that they are going to try out as many co-host options as possible. This revolving door was to ensure that not only Kelly Ripa, but the production staff would feel secure with the character and integrity of the new host.
Yet, the insider had originally said that Kelly Ripa would make the announcement of who her new co-host would be before summer break. Summer break is at the end of the week and now an insider says that this anticipated announcement will not be made until November sweeps.
Coincidentally, November sweeps is after the Presidential election. Is it possible that news reporter Anderson Cooper needs to remain at CNN until after the election? Perhaps Cooper cannot commit to Live With Kelly until after the election? As he is at the top of Kelly’s list, maybe the rotating co-hosts and noncommittal to a new co-host is a way to stall until her top choice is available to co-host with her? A People source said that she really wanted Cooper in 2011. She may find Anderson Cooper worth waiting for and is stalling until she can make this announcement.
Who do you think will co-host with Kelly? Are you enjoying the co-host rotation, or are you ready for a permanent co-host?
[Photo by Mark Davis/Getty Images]