It's a new era for Live. Ryan Seacrest has joined Kelly Ripa at the desk more than a year after Michael Strahan departed. It's been over a year of rotating cohosts, rumors and endless speculation, but Ripa told press she wouldn't have it any other way.
"Yeah, it's been fun and I cannot take away anything from—I've got to say, the men and women that sat with me were total pros and extraordinary," Ripa told press after taping her first show with Seacrest. "And [the guest cohosts] really did take time away from their day jobs to come and sit with me every day. Whatever it took to get to this place was worth it."
Ripa and Seacrest said they first talked about sitting opposite each other "like a decade ago."
"You were so ensconced with your other jobs and living in LA," Ripa said. "We've always enjoyed working together. That's never been a question. It's just been being on the same coast at the same time."
Speaking of Seacrest's other jobs, he'll be live on air alongside Ripa before going to a new studio in the ABC building for his radio show. He'll then fly back to Los Angeles on the weekends.
The two cohosted Live's post-Oscars show together in February and the seeds were already planted, but not quite there yet. "She came over the night before the Academy Awards and we knew that we were on the path to completing it, but we weren't quite sure we'd get there," Seacrest revealed.
As for who made the final decision, Ripa said it was a group one. Seacrest had a different take.
"It was a group decision," Ripa said. "This is a decision they don't—"
"The boss, the boss," Seacrest said gesturing to Ripa.
"It's not just up to one person. This was a mutual decision, a universal decision," Ripa confirmed.
During their first show together the two interviewed Guardians of the Galaxy star Chris Pratt and 11-year-old P.J. Ball showed off his Sport Stacking skills with cups. When asked to describe their chemistry, Ripa and Seacrest said it's just there.
"That's a thing that I always find so interesting. People always talk about chemistry and that is for other people to describe, that's not for us to describe because we're just being with each other," Ripa said. "We like each other so we enjoy our time together. So, I can't describe my chemistry with you."
"I think it's just the naturalness to being next to each other that hopefully comes across. I think when we're hosting the show, I don't know what she's going to say, but I kind of know when she's going to say something-ish. I think you feel the same way," Seacrest added.
"Yeah. And you guys saw, you were here, you saw how it works," Ripa said. "Sometimes we're having normal conversations in the beginning of the show, but eventually it moves into the interview section and it becomes more of a—"
"How to dance," Seacrest said.
"Just knowing when each person is going to speak. We learned each other's rhythms early on I think," Ripa said.
"We stacked cups together well," Seacrest said.
Live with Kelly and Ryan airs weekdays on ABC.