Regis Says Adios, Comments on Replacement: "I'm Interested Myself to See Who Gets It"

Talk show host Philbin bids farewell after 28 years on the job

By Bruna Nessif Nov 18, 2011 2:15 AMTags

Alas, the day has come.

Tomorrow will mark the last time Regis Philbin will take his seat next to cohost Kelly Ripa on Live, and today, E! News was lucky enough to get a few words from the separating couple (it's like a breakup!) at Philbin's farewell press conference.

"I feel pretty good, I'm not saying I'm gonna feel as good on Monday down there in Miami, but right now...I wasn't looking forward to this moment—you never are in your life—especially when you're leaving a success that you worked your tail off to make, and it's here. And why not hang around and enjoy it? But I have and its time really to move on…"

But, move on to what, exactly?

"I don't know. I have nothing, don't know what is coming next," the 80-year-old explains. "I think reality [TV] is a phrase, it's not the truth…but you know, it entertains a lot of people."

But more importantly lingering on all of our minds, including Ripa's, is who will be lucky (and brave) enough to try and fill the shoes of Mr. Regis Philbin on the show?

"Frankly I'd like to stay out of it…I don't wanna disappoint other people who are looking for the job," Philbin says. "Kelly is a great little storyteller in her own right. I tell ya, its not as easy as it looks, this cohosting thing. It just wasn't for me. So we'll see what happens, I'm interested myself to see who gets it."

Whoever this mystery person is (and it won't be Ripa's hubby Mark Consuelos), Regis' cohost lays down the concrete qualities necessary to do the job:

"His name should be Regis, he should fit into this chair exactly right, you know it's hard to say. I think you just have to be a great storyteller and roll with the punches. And not be a pain in the butt," she shares.

There's no question Regis has created a legacy, and his exit will be difficult for some to accept. Including Ripa, who got a little emotional talking about it.

"It's difficult to say goodbye," she says. "I really have been trying to put it out of my mind, in a way that is…we're all sort of profoundly putting it out of our minds. Today was really difficult. Every day has been difficult, today was especially difficult, and tomorrow, I think I'll probably, maybe, hopefully, god-willing I'll go into some sort of trance.

"The key thing to remember in all of this is that this whole goodbye celebration is about Regis, it's about celebrating his legacy and its about continuing on with his legacy, because at the end of the day this is still his legacy that he set up this platform. So no matter who's here, and moving forward down the line, even when I'm not here, the people that carry on this show are carrying on his legacy. And I think that's what's important and that's what we're setting out to do. But just knowing that we'll have to do it without him sitting here is very emotional."