Leonardo DiCaprio got patriotic on the 4th of July by serving his country … as well as serving his guests during a volleyball game that he was REALLY into. The Oscar winner co-hosted an Independence Day shindig Wednesday in Malibu with his…
Matt has been out for about a month now.
And Hoda Kotb is officially in.
Following multiple weeks as the fill-in for Lauer (who was fired, of course, due to some serious allegations of sexual misconduct), Kotb was named his full-time replacement on Tuesday morning.
She will greet viewers everyday alongside Savannah Guthrie.
“Welcome to Today and we are kicking off the year right because Hoda is officially the co-anchor of Today, so let’s give her a round of applause,” Guthrie opened the show today, adding:
“This has to be the most popular decision NBC News has ever made and I am so thrilled.”
The decision marks the first time two women will co-host the long-running program each day.
“I am pinching myself,” Kotb said. “I think we should send some medics to Alexandria, Virginia, where my mom has likely fainted after hearing the open of that show.”
Hoda, of course, has been co-anchoring her own hour of Today with Kathie Lee Gifford for years.
She sat in with Guthrie on the morning they told the world that Lauer had been fired, saying on air at the time:
“It’s hard to reconcile with what we are hearing with the man who we know, who walks in this building every single day…
“We were both woken up with the news, kind of pre-dawn, and we’re trying to process it and trying to make sense of it – and it’ll take some time for that.”
In a statement to staff this week, meanwhile, NBC News chair Andy Lack said the following:
“Over the past several weeks, Hoda has seamlessly stepped into the co-anchor role alongside Savannah, and the two have quickly hit the ground running.
“They have an undeniable connection with each other and most importantly, with viewers, a hallmark of Today.”
You’d have to imagine there’s an appeal for executives in having two women occupy these seats as well, considering the heinous details that have been reported regarding how Lauer treated the opposite sex during his time at NBC.
“You are a partner and a friend and a sister and I am so happy to be doing this,” Guthrie told Hoda this morning.
It was actually a pretty moving exchange between the colleagues.
Kotb has been with NBC News since 1998 when she joined Dateline; she has filled in on the first two hours of Today quite frequently over the years, so this is familiar terrain for her.
As you can see below, the Internet is pretty excited over the news:
Do you share their enthusiasm?
Are you psyched to tune in each morning for Guthrie and Kotb?
Or are you more of a Good Morning America kind of person anyway?
The Kardashians recently celebrated ten years on television, an impressive achievement in the era of Peak TV.
But throughout their careers, the cultural legitimacy that they seem to crave has eluded Kim and company.
They’ve made attempts to shake off the stigma of reality stardom, but audiences have been slow to accept the idea of the Kard clan as entertainers or or even talk show hosts.
Kim Kardashian’s attempt at a music career earned her more laughter than applause.
Kris Jenner’s short-lived talk show flopped with both critics and audiences.
Most recently, Khloe Kardashian tried to rebrand herself as an Andy Cohen-esque droll new voice in late night, but Kocktails With Khloe was canceled by E! after a just a few weeks on the air.
But this is the family who turned a “leaked” sex tape into one of a wildly lucrative multimedia empire, so it’s not hard to see persistent in their belief that mainstream acceptance is just around the corner.
It’s in that spirit that Kim has accepted a substitute spot on ABC’s Live With Kelly and Ryan in hopes that it’ll lead to a full-time gig.
It’s tough to imagine Kim as a daytime host, but she has reason to be hopeful.
According to Radar Online, Kim’s co-host soon-to-be co-host, Ryan Seacrest, sees her as the future of the long-running Live franchise.
Seacrest has been by the Kardashian’s side from the very beginning, helping to launch Keeping Up With the Kardashians back in 2007 and staying on as executive producer throughout the show’s ten-year run.
Rumors of on-set tension between Seacrest and current co-host Kelly Ripa have been circulating for months, and sources say Rya would love nothing more than for Kim to take Kelly’s spot in the seat next to him.
“She has Ryan’s support,” one insider tells Radar.
The insider says Seacrest has always been planning to choose Ripa’s replacement when she eventually moves on to a different gig.
“Ryan would love to get one of his friends to replace Kelly if she chooses to leave,” the source adds.
“He likes surrounding himself with people who adore him and are loyal to him.”
As for Ripa, she’s reportedly been open to the idea of seeking out greener pastures ever since former co-host Michael Strahan left Live unexpectedly last year.
“Kelly’s announced that if push comes to shove, she’s ready to walk,” says the insider.
Sounds like this is the chance Kim’s been waiting for.
But only time will tell if she’s capable of winning over skeptical viewers.
Ryan Seacrest and Kelly Ripa may look happy when the cameras are rolling on Live with Kelly and Ryan, but for one of them, the show is not that great.
Yes, we’re talking about Ryan here.
The former American Idol host needs to spend a lot of time New York City in order to keep up with his co-hosting duties on the morning talk show… and he ain’t pleased about it.
According to Radar, life in the Big Apple is not all it has cracked up to be for Ryan, and he allegedly yearns for the weekend so he can hope across the country to Los Angeles.
“Ryan is miserable,” the insider dishes, adding that relocating to the New York City has been “the biggest mistake of his life.”
There’s even word the 42-year-old has become a recluse, despite being invited to some of the most exclusive parties in town.
“He hasn’t embraced the city and hasn’t been going out to the restaurants or parties,” the insider continues.
“He’s invited to almost every event every night and doesn’t go!”
Living in New York City would be a dream for most, but Ryan has been known as someone who likes the sunny weather of Los Angeles.
“He’s such an LA guy and is finding NYC tough. The weather and the hustle of the city is too much.”
Probably making matters worse is that the ratings are actually down 25 percent vs. last year for the show. Ryan will likely be feeling that he’s party responsible for that.
Network execs don’t like when ratings are down and generally try to get rid of the problem quickly. With Kelly as a long-standing host, it would make sense to keep her around.
Ryan, however, is likely expendable.
Kelly has been known in the past to not get along with her co-hosts, and if recent reports to be believed, she is not getting along with Ryan.
Another thing probably irks Ryan is that ABC is rebooting American Idol and he’s very busy with Live. Word on the street is that he has been offered over $ 10 million for his hosting duties.
Seems like a decent salary, right?
Well, Katy Perry has been confirmed as the first judge and is getting $ 25 million for her services. That’s a huge pay gap and considering Ryan has been on the show since 2002.
So, it seems like things are not working out for Ryan right now.
What will he do? Will he stick it out in New York, or return to his roots in Los Angeles?
Sound off below!
Newly engaged “Morning Joe” host Mika Brzezinski had her new ice on when she took her dog out for a walk Thursday morning in NYC. She and fiance, Joe Scarborough, have co-hosted the MSNBC show since 2007, and just went public with their…
Just about one year to the day after Michael Strahan left Live! for Good Morning America, Kelly Ripa has announced her selection for his permanent replacement.
And it’s incredibly lame.
Over the weekend, Ripa took to social media to tease the impending addition, telling followers that she’s soon going to “need a bigger mug.”
As a caption to a video on Instagram, the beloved morning personality added: “#TuneInToLive #BigAnnouncement #LiveKellyCohost.”
So viewers tuned in today with expectations high and curiosity piqued, only for Ripa to come out first thing and announce her new co-host will be…
… RYAN SEACREST?!?
Yes, Ryan Seacrest.
Is he a safe choice? A vanilla choice? A popular entertainment presence who is unlikely to turn off any long-time fans? Sure.
But he’s also the most ubiquitous person in Hollywood. He’s already everywhere, from red carpet specials to daily radio shows and everything in between.
Who’s getting excited to see more of Ryan Seacrest on television?!?
“Today is a very good day,” Ripa told the show’s studio audience at the outset of Monday’s broadcast.
She then thanked all of the stars who had filled in on a temporary basis over the past several months (Anderson Cooper, Andy Cohen, Fred Savage, Jerry O’Connell, etc.) prior to saying she’d reveal the new co-host “after the break.”
For those unaware, this was a reference to Seacrest’s famous cliffhanger teases nearly every week on American Idol.
And when the commercials ended, Seacrest walked out on to the set.
“I couldn’t be more excited to be here with you,” he said once Ripa introduced him, joking about how he had to duck down in the backseat of a car when entering the studio’s parking area earlier that morning in order to keep the secret.
“Take a bow! Take a bow!” Ripa chimed in.
Last spring, Strahan announced he was leaving Live!, angering Ripa because she was not informed of this decision until the very last moment.
Viewers were then treated to some of the most awkward moments in live television history, with such tension existing between Ripa and Strahan that the latter moved up his departure date by four months.
Said Ripa upon returning to work last April, following a brief walk-out in protest of how Strahan’s departure was handled:
“What transpired over the course of a few days has been extraordinary in the sense that it started a much greater conversation about communication and consideration and, most importantly, respect in the workplace.”
We’re all for respect in the workplace.
We also would have been all for Richard Curtis as Ripa’s permanent co-host, considering the great impression that contest winner left on viewers during his multiple guest-hosting stints.
Live! blew a chance to build some real buzz with Curtis, to create a star from nothing.
Instead of making this kind of splash, however, producers chose to barely even make a ripple.
Do you agree with this assessment?
Do you wish Live! had gone in a different direction?
VOTE below: Are you excited for Ryan Seacrest as co-host of Live!?
Ryan Seacrest is the new co-host of ‘Live’ with Kelly Ripa … which means a coast-to-coast move for the former “American Idol” host. Ripa has been without a co-host for a year, since Michael Strahan bailed for “Good Morning America.” Seacrest has…
Goodbye, Michael Strahan?
Hello… Richard Curtis?!?
Maybe, just maybe. As unexpected as this may seem. Allow us to explain…
Back in May, Strahan left his seat as a co-host on Live! with Kelly in order to become a full-time correspondent on Good Morning America.
The move – or, to be more specific, the way the move was negotiated and then announced – did not sit well with Ripa, who made her feelings of disrespect and irritation well known to producers.
And to the public, really.
The last week of her and Strahan as co-hosts made for awkward, tension-filled, must-watch television.
After Strahan departed the popular morning program, Ripa and company did not announce a full-time replacement.
Instead, she returned with new episodes (and a new logo!) and said she would be auditioning a rotating cast of famous characters for the gig.
From Jeff Gordon to Neil Patrick Harris to Anderson Cooper, new stars sat next to Ripa on a daily basis.
But one has apparently stood out from the rest, although he is anything but a star.
His name is Richard Curtis. He’s a high school teacher from Pennsylvania and he won a social media contest to guest-host Live! for a morning alongside Ripa.
According to TMZ sources, Curtis “blew everyone away” with his stint on the show last Friday.
As a result, producers have decided to bring Curtis back again next month for an episode and are seriously considering him as a long-term replacement for Strahan.
An insider tells TMZ that the feedback on this teacher was “universally positive,” as staffers were shocked by his poise and self-confidence.
A 30-year old father of two, Curtis was overwhelmed by the experience on set last week.
“So there’s tough days at the office and then what I experienced today! Oh, my, gosh!!!!” he wrote on Instagram after his episode aired.
“This has been a whirlwind of awesomeness!”
Curtis included the following photo of himself and Ripa along with this caption.
You can watch the video at the very top of this article to see Curtis in relaxed, funny, easygoing action with Ripa.
They seem to somehow have chemistry already.
Earlier this month, E! News reported that frequent guest co-host Jerry O’Connell is very interested in taking over for Strahan, writing at the time:
“Jerry’s staying super positive about it, but says he’s totally in the dark on the selection process,” a source told E!. “If he’s chosen, he says he’ll probably be the last to know. He’s adores Kelly, though. If she asks, he’d love the job.”
Look. O’Connell would be a fine choice. He’s done a solid job every time he’s appeared on the program.
But would he really move the ratings needle? Would he really make a splash?
ABC has a chance here to groom its next star (and likely save a ton of contract money in the process).
It seems like a no-brainer to go with Curtis, especially considering his humble, gracious, sincere personality.
“I have no clever jokes. It’s just me from the bottom of my heart saying thank you for giving me this opportunity. I cried like six times again today. It’s so heartwarming,” Richard wrote on Instagram Tuesday, adding:
“You guys got behind me, you supported me in a dream that was so outlandish that I could possibly sit next to Kelly Ripa and guys, I won and I feel like I did really well, but I’m not sure.”
You did, Richard. And we hope to see you back on the show many, many, many, many times in the future.