Kelly Ripa insists she does not “disparage” former co-host Regis Philbin – saying she is simply “setting things straight” about their “complex” relationship.
Ripa, 51, and Philbin—who died two years ago at the age of 88—spent a decade hosting ABC’s Live! Together, they shared the screen between 2001 and 2011.
But the pair have been plagued by persistent rumors that they secretly hate each other off-camera – and in 2017, Philbin claimed he was never asked again on the show and hasn’t spoken to Ripa since his exit.
The blonde blonde did not dispute Philbin’s claims at the time – something he now regrets.
In an interview with Andy Cohen Watch what happens live. Thursday night, RIBA claimed she was “targeted” and unfairly slapped for her silence on the issue.
“I hope to put things right in real time,” she stated. “I really trusted the people around me…People keep telling me to take the highway.”
“As a woman, we are often asked to take the highway, and this is the woman who goes by the name ‘Shut the fk up,’” the small screen star declared.
Ripa has now written about her relationship with Philbin in her new book, “Live Wire: Long Winding Short Stories.”
The emerging author says that she does not “disparage” her late partner, and in fact “expresses a lot of love” to him in the book.
“I painstakingly wrote every word in this book, and it was tough and those chapters [about Philbin] It was the hardest to write,” she told Cohen.
Earlier this week, while promoting the folder, Ripa spoke candidly about Philbin in an interview with People, Saying, “I don’t want to feel like I’m criticizing anyone or being disrespectful. But I also want people to know it wasn’t a picnic.”
Ripa lifted the lid on what it was like working with Philbin, saying that their working relationship started in the wrong way.
The blonde was ordered not to bring an “entourage” to the set, but appeared with a make-up artist and hairdresser – much to the chagrin of Philbin.
“I came with hair and makeup,” the blonde admitted. “It was not unusual for people to appear on a TV show with him.”
However, she claims, Philbin greeted her and on the show’s executive producer, Michael Gilman, with a stoic salute: “Oh, oh, Gilman, you’ve got a footnote.”
Ripa told People that Philbin’s remark “felt terrible.” “Maybe he was trying to be funny,” she said, “but at the same time he looked like a heap.”
However, the couple spent a decade together on the small screen before Philbin announced his retirement in 2011.
In 2017, Filipino told Larry King that Ripa was “very upset” when he announced that he was leaving the show. “I thought I was leaving because of her. I was leaving because I was getting old and it just didn’t work for me anymore,” he told King at the time.
Speaking of those remarks, Ripa told People on Monday, “The show has come up a few times. It makes me sad, but it’s not something I’ll ever understand. I’ve been steadfast in trying to connect. You can’t get someone to befriend you.”
However, Ripa insists on having “good days” working with Philbin on “Live!” They say their relationship was less strained outside of work.
The star says she “enjoyed” the “few times” they spent together away from the show’s location.
“We went to the same resort once on vacation and it came to a dinner they hosted – one of the favorite nights of my life,” she said. “I’ve never laughed so hard.”
She also praised Philbin’s television talents, telling People, “If I could be number 10, I’d be happy. She takes the audience on tour with you and remembers that you’re always the point of the joke.”
She later said, “I loved him, and I still love him.”