Sad news for fans of Kelly and Ryan. After spending the better part of a decade co-hosting Live With Kelly and Ryan alongside Kelly Ripa, Ryan Seacrest announced this morning that he is leaving the show.
Even though he’s a renowned and talented host, Ryan Seacrest, 48, feels more like a friend. He’s been with us for every episode of American Idol — for all 19 seasons of the show; he hosts seemingly endless red carpet events; and he’s rung in the New Year as a consistent part of Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve since 2005. He’s also been involved in radio, Olympics coverage, and TV production.
With his charming on-screen persona and extensive experience, Seacrest was a natural fit to replace Michael Strahan as co-host of Live with Kelly and Ryan in 2017. Seacrest and Kelly Ripa had been friends for a long time already — almost 20 years — and their bond translated to a seamless, enjoyable co-hosting dynamic. “We’ve known each other a really long time. He’s the kid brother I never had … we trust each other, and we respect each other. We have a really unique off-camera friendship … which doesn’t happen very often,” Ripa said of her relationship with Seacrest on the Dear Gabby podcast in November 2022.
Their almost familial bond made Seacrest’s announcement today bittersweet. “Working alongside Kelly over the past six years has been a dream job and one of the highlights of my career,” Seacrest said in a statement. “She has been an amazing partner, friend, and confidant, and although we will always be a part of each other’s lives, I will miss our mornings together.”
Of her pal’s departure, Ripa added, “I’m so grateful to have spent the last six years beside my dear friend of too many decades to count and will miss starting my days with Ryan. [His] energy, passion, and love for entertainment is one-of-a-kind.” While Ripa will miss her buddy, she won’t be left alone — her husband, Mark Conseulos, will be replacing Seacrest as co-host. “It’s been a memorable ride and now I’m excited to pass the baton to Kelly’s ‘real’ husband,” joked Seacrest.
It won’t be the first time Consuelos has been on the show. He stepped in as co-host in 2021 when Seacrest took a brief step back, sparking rumors of severe exhaustion — his team even staged an intervention to get him to slow down and rest, according to Us Weekly. With his multiple projects and packed schedule, it’s no surprise he temporarily lost steam; but Seacrest’s publicist assured fans that he was doing well.
Thankfully, Ryan won’t be disappearing from our TV screens entirely. Catch him hosting the new season of American Idol, which premieres Sunday, February 19, at 8 p.m. on ABC. Whatever Ryan Seacrest decides to do next, we hope his future endeavors are fulfilling, and that he can get some much-needed rest.
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