It’s Been One Year Since Michael Strahan Announced He Was Leaving Live!: A Timeline
Can you believe how time flies?!
It’s been a year since Michael Strahan surprised America—and Kelly Ripa—with news of his departure from Live! With Kelly and Michael in favor of heading to Good Morning America full time. He was on the show for fewer than four years. While Ripa still hasn’t found a permanent cohost, she did find a new name for the show, Live! With Kelly, and a slew of rotating guest hosts who have more than made their mark as her sidekick.
Since it’s been a year, we at E! News decided it was time to look back on what has happened with Ripa, Strahan and Live!. Without further ado, a timeline of the past year:
April 2016: ABC and Strahan announce his decision to leave the 9 a.m. show. “I look forward to continuing to work with the incredible team at GMA. It is an exciting opportunity to be able to bring unique stories and voices to the audience,” Strahan said in a statement. “My time with LIVE with Kelly and Michael has been transformative, and my departure will be bittersweet. Kelly has been an unbelievable partner, and I am so thankful to her and the entire team. I am extremely grateful for the amazing support I’ve received from all of the fans.”
Feeling disrespected and “livid,” Ripa took time off from the show to go on vacation with husband Mark Consuelos. She eventually surfaced in New York City holding a copy of David and Goliath, making people wonder if she was sending a message to executives. Ripa returned to the show by the end of the month, and Strahan announced he wouldn’t be staying until September. Instead, he would leave in May.
May 2016: A week into their return to co-hosting, it was clear they were in an awkward place. Ripa continuously made discreet jabs at Strahan, poking fun at his love life and contract negotiations. Despite the turmoil the show faced in April, the cohosts managed to pick up a Daytime Emmy win for Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Host.
Strahan’s last day was Friday, May 13, and Jimmy Kimmel served as her first guest cohost the following Monday.
June 2016: Live! goes on summer hiatus.
Strahan admits he doesn’t miss working on Live!. “I really haven’t missed it,” Strahan said on an episode of Chelsea. “But I loved it. Don’t get me wrong. I loved it. When you get a break, sometimes you kind of go, ‘Wow, I kind of needed it.’ I needed a break.”
July 2016: Strahan continues to open up about his improved life post-Live!, telling E! News, “You know what? I’ve learned to have fun. Life is not that serious.” He also admitted he “couldn’t wait” to join Good Morning America full-time.
August 2016: Ripa and Consuelos dropped their son, Michael Consuelos, off at college ahead of Live!’s return without Strahan.
September 2016: Live! With Kelly begins with host Ripa and the search for a permanent cohost gets underway. Strahan joins GMA full-time. ABC boss Ben Sherwood admits to botching Strahan’s exit.
October 2016: Teacher Richard Curtis wins the cohost search contest and ends up scoring a multi-visit gig. Ripa selects cohost Jerry O’Connell for the big Halloween special. Strahan admits the one downside of his GMA gig.
“I don’t know if you ever adjust to getting up, waking up so early—I don’t know if that’s possible, but I enjoy going in there,” he told E! News. “I look forward to being there,” he added. “It’s fun, because it’s new, it’s exciting, and I’m learning so much, and I work with great people.”
November 2016: Six months later, and Live! still has no cohost.
December 2016: Ripa addresses the lack of permanent cohost. “We really didn’t set a time frame for ourselves. We just wanted to wait until we found the right person,” she said on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen. “What we didn’t anticipate was that we would have such an outpouring of interest, so our list got very long very quickly. We’ve been trying to keep it as narrow as possible, but then people pop up.”
January 2017: New year, no new cohost for Ripa, but Strahan continues life on GMA. He also receives the Future of Fashion Award at the Geoffrey Beane National Scholarship Awards dinner for his foray into affordable menswear last year, Collection by Michael Strahan and MSX by Michael Strahan. “Fashion is like football,” he joked to the audience. “We all wear tight pants and run around screaming.”
February 2017: Strahan scores a spot on the Oscars red carpet pre-show, where he cohosts the coveted event with Robin Roberts and Lara Spencer.
March 2017: It becomes clear that O’Connell, Christian Slater, Anderson Cooper and Consuelos are Ripa’s preferred guest cohosts. They’ve appeared on the show more often than anyone else, but with Anderson on CNN full-time it’s unlikely he’ll be selected. With a ratings peak in December 2016 and steady numbers thereafter, it became clear audiences didn’t necessarily need the same face every day.
Rumors of behind-the-scenes drama at GMA begin to swirl, but ABC quashed them, saying, “the show has never been better.”
April 2017: Strahan scores an interview with Caitlyn Jenner about her new memoir, The Secrets of My Life.
It’s been quite the year for daytime TV to say the least, but we’ll just have to keep tuning in to see if Ripa ever chooses a new permanent partner.