Kelly Ripa is celebrating 20 years on Live!. The actress-turned-host opened up to Entertainment Weekly about joining the iconic talk show post-All My Children and what fans can expect from the upcoming AMC reboot.
Ripa first guest hosted the show in 2000, stepping in in a pinch. She resonated with audiences, making her a frontrunner to replace for Kathie Lee Gifford. Executive producer Michael Gelman shared:
The show had really reached an iconic level of pop culture where everyone knew Regis and Kathie Lee. ... Everyone was really questioning, could we go on? Kelly immediately lit up the room, and we knew there was something special. There was a certain charisma and humor and quickness that was really innate — because she wasn't an experienced broadcaster at the time. She just had that It Factor.
Ripa admitted that she felt a bit out of her depth on her first full day on set with Regis Philbin, which was Feb. 5, 2001. She recalled of the learning curve:
It was just sort of, 'This is your job now. Good luck, and godspeed. It really is one of those places where they give you autonomy. There's guidance, of course — they'll tell you, 'Please don't bring up so-and-so's arrest.' Sure. Or, 'Please don't mention...' whatever. But it really was an autonomous situation where I learned on the fly how to do that job because I didn't really have a lot of time. I guest-hosted that first time, [and] I think I guest-hosted two other times, and then I started working there.
Meanwhile, Ripa teased the exciting AMC reboot called Pine Valley, which she she and hubby Mark Consuelos (ex-Mateo) are working on. She dished:
We would be the parents, and this show is really more about the children of Pine Valley. It's a darker look at things, and I'm very excited about it. It was pitched to us and we were like, 'We will absolutely produce this. And we want to be a part of it.' Immediately we called [former All My Children costar Eva LaRue], all of our friends, and we started saying, 'Just be at the ready. Get ready.'