Legendary TV host Regis Philbin, 79, announced his retirement this morning on ‘Live! with Regis and Kelly.’ He is expected to stay with the show until the summer.
The broadcast started locally with The Morning Show on WABC in 1983. By 1988, Disney syndicated the one-hour daily program with then co-host Kathie Lee Gifford.
“WABC is proud to be the home of ‘LIVE! with Regis and Kelly,’ and it will be difficult to say goodbye to Regis after 28 years as a member of our family,” commented Dave Davis, president and general manager, WABC. “We will miss him as a colleague and friend. We’re fortunate, however, to have two real pros who can lead ‘LIVE’ into the future – Kelly Ripa, who has spent the last ten years developing her own amazing voice in daytime talk, and Michael Gelman, who has been with the show since its inception and is one of the best executive producers in daytime television.”
The Live franchise will continue as Ripa is about to mark her 10th season on the show.
The Bronx-born Philbin won three Daytime Emmy Awards, and a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008. Philbin, who has been on the air for more than 50 years, set a Guinness Book World Record in 2009 by logging the most hours in TV history (16,343).