Kelly Ripa‘s imminent return to the Live With Kelly and Michael hosts’ table was eased by a mea culpa from ABC and Disney executives, according to a new report.
CNN’s Brian Stelter cites several sources who say that Disney-ABC Television Group president Ben Sherwood and his associates reached out to Ripa and her departing co-host Michael Strahan — and both hosts’ agents — to apologize for the way news of Strahan’s exit from the daytime chatfest was handled last week.
As previously reported, Ripa sent an email to the staff of the show on Friday, thanking them for giving her time to “process” news of Strahan’s upcoming move to ABC’s Good Morning America, which reportedly blindsided her when she found out not long before the general public did on Tuesday.
At the end of Wednesday’s broadcast, Strahan — who hosted alongside fill-in Ana Gasteyer (Saturday Night Live) — addressed the absent Ripa and her effect on his time at Live.
“I really want to thank of course Kelly Ripa because Kelly welcomed me here and I’ve learned so much from her,” he said. “She’s been an amazing influence on me and it has truly changed my life to be here with her. I know that the show will continue to be strong and great because of Kelly and Michael Gelman and the staff here. Everybody is so talented and this show has not been around for over 30 years by mistake… Kelly, I thank you and I love you and everyone else here at Live.”
CNN also reports that Ripa would like to put the controversy behind her.
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