“Working alongside Kelly over the past six years has been a dream job and one of the highlights of my career. 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,” Seacrest said in a statement. “I also want to thank Michael Gelman and the entire staff and crew – we’ve made memories to last a lifetime, met some of the most incredible people and had the warmest welcome into the homes of so many viewers across America. It’s been a memorable ride and now I’m excited to pass the baton to Kelly’s ‘real’ husband, Mark [Consuelos].”
The 48-year-old TV personality joined Kelly Ripa on the daytime show in May 2017 after a lengthy search for a permanent cohost. Seacrest also addressed the decision on the Thursday, February 16, episode of the morning show.
“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,” Ripa said in a statement on Thursday. “Ryan’s energy, passion and love for entertainment is one-of-a-kind.”
While he was still taping the syndicated talk show, Seacrest continued his hosting duties on American Idol and produced On Air with Ryan Seacrest for KIIS-FM. Staying on top of his busy schedule proved to be a challenge in late 2021 when he was noticeably absent from Live. Fans began to grow concerned that the Emmy winner was experiencing exhaustion — and they weren’t the only ones.
“His team was so concerned they staged an intervention,” a source exclusively told Us in October 2021, adding that Seacrest was “in bad [shape].”
At the time, Consuelos, 51, joined his wife in Seacrest’s place. “Kelly is a pro and knows the show must go on,” a second insider told Us, noting that “Mark did a fantastic job supporting her and the whole cast” in Ripa’s moment of need.
The Keeping Up With the Kardashians producer previously worried viewers in May 2021 when he seemingly slurred his words during an episode of American Idol. The next morning, he missed a taping of Live — but Seacrest’s publicist shut down speculation about his health.
“Ryan did not have any kind of stroke last night,” a statement asserted at the time. “Like many people right now, Ryan is adjusting to the new normal and finding work-home balance, with the added stress of having to put on live shows from home. Between Live With Kelly & Ryan, American Idol, On Air With Ryan Seacrest, and the Disney Family Singalong specials, he has been juggling three-four on-air jobs over the last few weeks and he’s in need of rest. So today he took a well-deserved day off.”
Despite his mysterious absence from Live that fall, a third insider told Us that the Georgia native was handling his jam-packed schedule just fine. “He recognizes he needs to find windows of time to rest during these busy windows of work,” the source noted in October 2021.
Deal of the DayDaily Deals! Shop the Best Amazon Black Friday Finds Today View Deal
Before leaving the morning show, Seacrest announced that he would be stepping down from hosting E!’s live awards show coverage.
“After 14 years of hosting E!’s Live From the Red Carpet I’ve decided to move on to new adventures,” he said in a February 2021 statement. “I’ll miss the whole crew that works so hard behind the scenes and of course my amazing partner Giuliana [Rancic]. Thanks to everyone for watching all these years.”