Of the many potential replacements for Regis Philbin, former child star Mario Lopez is one of the favorites. Here’s why:
Regis Philbin is leaving “Live with Regis and Kelly” after years of morning-show success, reportedly because of a salary dispute. [Source: “Regis Philbin: ‘No, I’m not sick’,” USAToday.com, 1/19/11. Downloaded from: http://content.usatoday.com/communities/entertainment/post/2011/01/regis-philbin-no-im-not-sick-/1]. So, naturally, millions of fans want to know: Who is going to replace Regis Philbin as host of “Live”?
Mario Lopez (who you remember as Slater on Saved by the Bell) is reportedly one of about ten names being tossed around as potential replacements for Regis Philbin. [Parsley, Aaron. “The Men Who May Take Regis Philbin’s Seat on Live!,” People.com, 1/26/11. Downloaded from: http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20460822,00.html].
There are several reasons to believe that Mario Lopez could succeed as the new Regis Philbin:
1. Likeability. If you try to put your finger on Regis Philbin’s single greatest asset as a TV host, I think you will find that it is his likeability. He is simply a generally pleasant person, which is what people want in a morning show host. Mario Lopez, with his ever-present smile and offend-no-one persona has likeability in spades.
2. Latino. If Mario Lopez were selected to replace Regis Philbin, he would inject some ethnic diversity into the “Live” show. The show has done fine with an all-white cast, but Lopez might be able to attract a larger Latino audience that could improver the show’s ratings and general appeal.
3. Youth. One of the awkward points for Regis Philbin has been the age difference between him and Kelly Ripa. Mario Lopez would handily fix this problem. He appeals strongly to a younger audience and would likely help the show gain younger viewers.
There’s no telling whether Mario Lopez will get the chance to replace Regis Philbin. Given the chance, though, he seems likely to succeed. Professionally, he has reinvented himself several times already. It would be all too easy for him to slide into the “Live” morning talk show format.
Parsley, Aaron. “The Men Who May Take Regis Philbin’s Seat on Live!,” People.com, 1/26/11. Downloaded from: http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20460822,00.html
“Regis Philbin: ‘No, I’m not sick’,” USAToday.com, 1/19/11. Downloaded from: http://content.usatoday.com/communities/entertainment/post/2011/01/regis-philbin-no-im-not-sick-/1