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Ryan Seacrest joins 'Live with Kelly' morning talk show as Kelly Ripa's new co-host


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 05/01/2017 

Ryan Seacrest is often called the busiest man in Hollywood's entertainment industry, but now, he's going to be the busiest man in New York.

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The former longtime American Idol host from Los Angeles, CA, has joined Live with Kelly, ABC's syndicated morning talk show that films in New York, as Kelly Ripa's new co-host.

Shortly after sources leaked the big news and reports of Seacrest's new gig surfaced, Ripa officially made the announcement on the Monday, May 1 broadcast of Live with Kelly, which will be called Live with Kelly and Ryan going forward.

"Well, hi! Good morning. Nice to see you, partner," Seacrest told Ripa on the set before kissing her on the cheek. "I'm excited about it."

Seacrest went on to explain how his Live with Kelly participation came about.

"It's funny because Kelly and I are friends. We've known each other for a long time. And when we found out this was going to happen, we were told to keep it a secret. And we're not great at that. So it's funny because I sent a text to some of my close, close friends and co-workers," Seacrest began.

"I said, 'I've got some great news!' Responses were this from people who knew me well: 'You're engaged?!' No. 'You're having a baby?!' No, it's not that. 'You're coming out of the closet?!' I said, 'How long have you known me.' He said, 'Six years.' I said, 'It's none of that! It's this.' And I couldn't be more excited to be here with you today and all of you [in the studio audience and at home]."

Seacrest's first guest on the May 1 episode of Live with Kelly was actor Chris Pratt.

Seacrest has co-hosted Live with Kelly as a guest a total of five times since ABC began its search for Michael Strahan's replacement about one year ago.

"So excited to join this show!! @KellyRipa crushes every morning... one of my favorite people ever #livekellyryan," Seacrest tweeted on Monday.

Live with Kelly airs in many markets at 9AM, directly against the third hour of NBC's Today. Seacrest -- who already has a home in Manhattan -- will be moving from California to New York for this new job, according to CNN, but the hosting opportunity will not affect his other on-air and off-air roles.

Seacrest reportedly renewed his contract to host red carpet specials for NBCUniversal's E! network, and a source told CNN that a new radio studio will be built for Seacrest in the same building where Live with Kelly tapes so he can continue to host his nationally syndicated radio show On Air with Ryan Seacrest for iHeartMedia.

Seacrest also runs his own production company, which is behind Keeping Up with the Kardashians, and is reportedly set to host ABC's Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve again at the end of this year.

Seacrest hosted American Idol for 15 seasons since the show debuted back in 2002. The show captured America's heart and is credited with making Seacrest a household name.

Idol ended in early 2016, but reports have circulated the reality singing competition may be revived with executives eyeing Seacrest to potentially return as host.

Joining Live with Kelly, however, may open the door for new business ventures with the network's parent company, Disney, CNN reported.

The search for Ripa's new co-host began when Strahan unexpectedly left the talk show for a position on Good Morning America after co-hosting alongside Ripa for four years.

Ripa reportedly learned of Strahan's departure less than 30 minutes before news leaked in the press, and she was completely blindsided.

Following Strahan's exit, Ripa had many guest co-hosts on her show -- including Jerry O'Connell, Fred Savage, Andy Cohen, and Anderson Cooper.



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