Kelly Ripa said her life was changed by a single job. Ripa and her husband Mark Consuelos were interviewed as part of Entertainment Weekly's "#UnitedAtHome" series. In an All My Children reunion episode, Ripa discussed the role that the show played in her life. Ripa was cast as Hayley Vaughn on the series when she was just 20 years old.
"It really was a happy accident. It changed my life. It changed my entire life — not just my acting life, but changed the whole trajectory of my life," Ripa explained.
Not only did the show catapult her into stardom, but it's also where she met Consuelos, who she eventually married. Ripa also said that, unlike many of her co-stars who were also featured in the series, she wasn't a working actress before she landed the role.
"I wasn't like everybody else on this panel — everybody else had jobs and careers and they were professional actors/ I truly moved to New York and I was working at the Toy Fair and I auditioned sort of on a whim. I was originally dropping off other people's headshots, because [that was] my side hustle," she continued.Ripa said that originally her character's name was Hayley Wells, but they eventually decided that the name sounded too much like Hayley Mills and decided to change it. One day, she was able to read for Hayley, and the rest is history.
Ripa said that she went through six callbacks and two screen tests before she got the part. Consuelos echoed her comments. He said that prior to landing the role as Mateo Santos on the series, he wasn't much of an actor, either. He said that he had just moved to New York, and he also went through several screen tests.
The Live with Kelly and Ryan host said that she was eager for Consuelos to be cast. The whole cast bonded with him, and Ripa said that she and the rest of the cast were insistent that he stay on board for as long as possible.
The couple is currently in quarantine together. Ripa and co-host Ryan Seacrest have been filming Live remotely, and it was recently reported that her family has been filming the shows in the Caribbean. The news came as a shock to some, who had assumed that she was filming from her home. Apparently, Ripa, Consuelos, and their family arrived in the Caribbean just days before much of the world went into lockdown because of the coronavirus pandemic.