Kelly Ripa Reflects on ‘Live’ Controversy: Nobody Considered the Collateral Damage
Fences have been mended at Live, and this Friday (May 13), the show will celebrate co-host Michael Strahan's journey before a move to Good Morning America. But just a couple of weeks ago that production was steeped in thick tension, and in a new interview with People, Kelly Ripa reflects on ABC's neglect to give her a heads up on Strahan's exit.
On April 20, Ripa skipped a taping of the show — ostensibly out of hurt and confusion — but really, so she could gather her thoughts and react accordingly.
"I think what people need to understand about the entire situation is that I didn't just not show up," she said. "I said, in the room, 'I am going to take the day off.' I needed to actually sit and gather information. I needed to make sure I said the appropriate things on TV and didn't just come out and say whatever."
And the time off did her case some good — upon Ripa's April 26 return, she respectfully congratulated Strahan for his new gig, while holding ABC accountable for its poor handling of the announcement. She maintains she's excited for her co-host, but notes his shift left many in the lurch.
"...What nobody considered is there's a whole other group of people that it really impacts, because we have to now find another great person," she explained, noting the ripples the initial bomb-drop created among the crew. "In that moment there were people looking at me, saying, 'Tell us this is going to be okay. Are we going to be okay?'"
Now, Ripa feels confident that her experience has reaffirmed to ABC that people deserve "fair treatment" and "respect."
"...Sometimes when you are so comfortable with somebody, you may not give them the same consideration as somebody you're not as comfortable with — a certain formality falls away," she said. "When you're dealing with big business, it's easy to forget that you're dealing with people and that people have feelings. It's easy to just look at it like a business unit, a unit, a unit."
Read the full interview here, and tell us what you think of Kelly's words.
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