walked away with

Live with Regis and Kelly

Live with Regis and Kelly is a syndicated American television talk show, hosted by Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa. Before 2000, the show was known as, Live with Regis and Kathie Lee, with Kathie Lee Gifford co-hosting with Philbin. After Gifford left, it was Live with Regis, with only Philbin hosting before Ripa was added in 2001.

The program has aired for 24 years in its home market of New York City in its current format, and 19 years nationwide.

It was announced on January 16, 2007, that Live with Regis and Kelly has been renewed through the 2010-2011 season. The franchise will reach its 25th anniversary in 2008.


The Morning Show (1983 - 1988)

The show began in 1983 as The Morning Show, a local New York program on WABC-TV with Philbin and Cyndy Garvey as co-hosts. They were previously co-hosts on A.M. Los Angeles, a similar program on KABC-TV in Los Angeles. Ann Abernathy took over Garvey's co-hosting position in 1984. Gifford, then known as Kathie Lee Johnson from her first marriage, replaced Abernathy on June 24, 1985, and the show—which had held its own against Phil Donahue's show in the local market—took off.

Live with Regis and Kathie Lee (1988 - 2000)

On September 5, 1988, Buena Vista Television began syndicating the show nationwide. (In 1996, BVTV's parent company Disney would acquire ABC, WABC's parent company.) The title was changed to Live with Regis and Kathie Lee. Viewers embraced the show, making it a popular staple of daytime TV. On February 29, 2000, Gifford decided to leave the show to pursue her singing career, and spend more time with her family. Her last show was on July 28, 2000.

Live with Regis (2000 - 2001)

After Gifford's departure, Philbin continued with the show and began a search for another co-host. The show was renamed Live with Regis, as Philbin hosted alone, with his wife Joy Philbin or with varying guest hosts including everybody from the cast of Survivor to The Daily Show's Jon Stewart. During this time, Philbin won the Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Talk Show Host, and was also hosting ABC's enormously popular Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. During "auditions" for co-hosts, Kelly Ripa became a favorite and front-runner, especially after a segment on the first episode on which she was a guest host on November 1, 2000. Psychic Char Margolis correctly predicted that Ripa was pregnant, Ripa had only told a small circle of friends about the pregnancy, and not ABC (as she was an actress on All My Children at the time) or the public.

Live with Regis and Kelly (2001 - present)

Ripa was named the permanent co-host on February 5, 2001, and began her duties that day. Since Ripa took over, the show's ratings have increased to much higher levels, according to E!.

The show is still owned and produced by WABC-TV, and shares the same studio as WABC's venerable Eyewitness News broadcast. Not seen in the nationally syndicated show is a WABC Eyewitness News update, which is produced from its newsroom, as are all of its updates during Good Morning America due to the shared studio situation. In the beginning of the 2007-2008 television season WABC-TV has confirmed that Eyewitness News will once again acquire all of the current studio (TV13 and TV14), and Live with Regis and Kelly will move to the set used for the unsuccessful The Tony Danza Show located in the same building, or in the nearby vicinity. Construction on both sets began in the summer of 2007, the new sets should have their debut in either 2008, or 2009. Philbin announced on March 12, 2007, that he would undergo heart bypass surgery the following Wednesday after experiencing symptoms of heart disease. Guest co-hosts hosted alongside Ripa during Philbin's absence. He returned to his hosting duties on April 26, 2007, 6 weeks and 1 day after his surgery.

Studio Fire

On the night of May 27, 2007, a fire occurred near the news studio of WABC-TV, adjacent to Live with Regis and Kelly's set. Although both studios were affected by smoke and water damage, damage to Live's set was minimal. The flooding in Live's control room was enough to require the show to temporarily relocate. Beginning with the show's May 29, 2007 broadcast (the previous day's show was already recorded due to the Memorial Day holiday), the show moved to the set of Who Wants to Be a Millioniare, located near and on the same street as the Live studio. Kathie Lee Gifford returned as a special co-host alongside Regis and Kelly on September 14, 2007, to celebrate Live’s 20 years in national syndication.

25th Anniversary

When Live! kicks off its 25th season in Fall 2008, Philbin will be paring back his hosting duties to 3 days a week (he had already reduced to 4 days a week a few years ago). Kelly will continue to tape live editions of Thursday and Friday's episodes with a guest co-host. Most weeks Regis will tape a show Wednesday for Thursday. And sometimes Regis will work a Thursday to air on Friday


Live, as implied in its name, is broadcast live weekdays at 9 a.m. ET, except for some special editions or reruns. (Instead of true reruns, Live will usually air previously aired celebrity guest and other non-"host chat" segments and record a new "host chat" segment to accommodate ongoing trivia contests.) It is aired throughout the United States and Canada usually at 9 a.m or 10 a.m. local time; this implies that many East Coast affiliates receive the live feed of the show.

The show features bantering between Regis and Kelly, phone-in contests, and celebrity guests. It is produced by Michael Gelman. The first 15 to 20 minutes, known as "host chat", is known for being improvised, often involving Gelman somehow. Other foils for the co-hosts have included WABC-TV program director Art Moore, who supervises Live, former WABC-TV weatherman Sam Champion, and other program staffers. Following the host chat, the daily "Travel Trivia" contest (a contest in the form of Dialing for Dollars) takes place, with a home viewer having to answer a question about the previous day's show in order to win a vacation prize package for him/herself (with the spin of a huge wheel) and a prize for a lucky audience member (as chosen by Kelly's line "Please pick a number between 1 and" the day's attendance in the audience). Following the contest, the rest of the show is filled with guests, mostly celebrity interviews, and often during the final segment a demonstration, performance or food segment airs. On shows that are not live, the "host chat" segment is often truncated to less than 5 minutes, followed by a new travel trivia segment, and a series of recut interviews with recent guests.

Tony Pigg is the show's current announcer.

The theme and other music for the show was composed by award winning composer Shelly Palmer, who also did the current "Channel 7 Late Movie" theme for WABC.

Live has consistently been rated among the top three syndicated daytime talk shows in the US, behind The Oprah Winfrey Show and Dr. Phil.

The Live series has fared so well that it inspired similarly formatted talk shows. Some have been successful (The View), while others have had limited or no success (The Tony Danza Show, Living It Up! With Ali & Jack). The now cancelled British television series, Today with Des and Mel, was based on Live.

September 11, 2001, attacks

On the day after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Live was on the air for an extended time with Philbin and Ripa discussing the attacks. The opening credits featured a still image of an American flag and the World Trade Center. The daily dialogue talked about how people in New York City were struggling with the attacks, and how people were mourning the many deaths of loved ones.

Guest co-hosts

Most episodes of Live will feature both named co-hosts. But when either co-host needs a break, or has duties that prevent him or her from hosting the show, a celebrity guest will fill in as the other host, usually (but not always) of the same gender as the missing host.

Lisa Rinna and Valerie Bertinelli, two women always mentioned by Regis as potential substitutes for Kelly.

Wheel Of Fortune host Pat Sajak, CNN anchor Anderson Cooper, Survivor host Jeff Probst, Bryant Gumbel, NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon, and Kelly's husband Mark Consuelos are frequent substitutes for Philbin. Joy Philbin, Regis' wife, is a frequent substitute for Kelly.

Note that there have been a number of celebrities who were on the Philbin version of Millionaire to have guest starred on Live. Those being:

Philbin has just started with a new game show called Million Dollar Password. A few of the celebrity helpers have guest starred on Live. Those being:


The show has been parodied for its banter and the personalities of its co-hosts.

  • In Frisky Dingo, Live with Mitzi and Verl is a spoof of Live with Regis and Kelly. When the super-villain Killface attempts to pitch his plan to destroy the world, the co-hosts are oblivious to what he says and are more concerned with their conversation and the product placement of a new car.
  • Saturday Night Live has parodied Live with Regis and Kelly (2000-2007), with Darrell Hammond as Regis Philbin, Amy Poehler as Kelly Ripa, and Chris Kattan and Rachel Dratch as Michael Gelman. Live with Regis and Kathie Lee was also parodied (1990-1991), with Dana Carvey as Regis Philbin and Jan Hooks as Kathie Lee Gifford.
  • In addition, Saturday Night Live aired a skit called Morning Latte (1997-2000). The co-hosts, played by Will Ferrell and Cheri Oteri, tell each other their personal stories, similar to Live with Regis and Kathie Lee's "host chat", but they respond overenthusiastically to each other. They also take a light-hearted tone with their guests.
  • On a 1996 TBN episode of Colby's Clubhouse, two of the cast members did a Prodigal Son segment where then-co hosts Regis Philbin and Kathie Lee Gifford were parodied.
  • Kanye West included the following line in his hit song, "Jesus Walks": "The way Kathie Lee needed Regis that's the way I need Jesus".
  • On Episode 4 of Wizards of Waverly Place, Alex and Harper are getting a new job from Alex's dad and they're talking during work time, Alex's dad interrupts their conversation by going, "Regis, Kelly, back to work." Alex played by Selena Gomez has appeared on the show.
  • In Treehouse of Horror IX of The Simpsons, Kathie Lee Gifford and Regis Philbin appear on the Simpsons TV, when Bart and Lisa are trapped in the TV, and fall into a pot of stew that Gifford and Philbin are cooking from Dom DeLuise's recipe. When Philbin and Gifford get spilled on, Gifford responds to this by storming off, declaring "That's it! I'm going home! Dom DeLuise can interview himself!"
  • In an episode of Hey Arnold, the character "Stinky" appears as a guest on the show. During his interview, Regis uses his catchphrase "I'm out of control!" and Kathie Lee tearfully exclaims, "I love my kids!"
  • In an episode of Seinfeld, Cosmo Kramer appears on the show to promote his new coffee table book about coffee tables and spits coffee on Kathy Lee. Regis Philbin and Kathy Lee Gifford appeared as themselves.

References and notes

External links

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