Kelly Ripa has another supporter amid the drama surrounding “LIVE! With Kelly and Michael”—Regis Philbin.
Ripa’s former co-host offered support when TMZ caught up with the 84-year-old media personality in New York City on April 21.
“They should’ve told her in the beginning,” said Philbin. When asked, if Ripa was “backdoored,” Philbin stated, “To a degree, I mean, I can’t tell because I’m not there.”
This comes days after media mogul, Oprah Winfrey expressed support for Kelly Ripa.
“Nobody should ever be blindsided,” said Winfrey to Entertainment Tonight. “I don’t know who’s in charge, but somebody should’ve said, ‘This is gonna happen.’ You shouldn’t have to read it in the paper. Ever.”
Things have gotten stormy on the ABC show ever since Michael Strahan announced his impending departure—a revelation that blindsided 45-year-old Ripa.
Strahan is scheduled to begin his new position at “Good Morning America” in September but thus far has appeared on “LIVE!”—sans Ripa—since his April 19 announcement.
It was reported that Ripa and husband Mark Consuelos were headed to Turks and Caico for their 20th wedding anniversary and will return to the show sometime next week. In the meantime, actress Ana Gasteyer and Erin Andrews have filled in for the missing-in-action personality.
As did Oprah, Philbin praised Strahan.
“He’s great!” He was great with the [New York] Giants; he was great on our show,” said Philbin. “He’s doing a lot of stuff. He’s a real pro and they’re going to use him down there.”
Philbin who co-hosted “LIVE!” with Kelly from 2001 to 2011 doesn’t intend to reunite with his former colleague.
“She’s got a bunch of people that she likes, whoever it is, God bless them. Regis has had enough. Twenty-eight years there, 25 before in Hollywood before I came here. I’m done!”