After Regis Philbin announced that he was leaving his hit show this week, speculation swirled about why he would leave. Now we know the answer: money.
In the aftermath of Regis Philbin’s announcement that he would be leaving “Live with Regis and Kelly,” his long-running morning show, Philbin assured his audience that he was not leaving for health reasons. He declined, however, to say what he real reasons for leaving were. [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].
While it would have been natural to assume that someone Philbin’s age had health concerns, the announcement that he was healthy only made his real reasons for leaving more obscure. He was obviously not being forced out for being “defiant,” as Keith Olbermann reportedly was (see: Keith Olbermann Pink Slip). Nor is it very believable that Philbin offended advertisers, viewers, or anyone else.
Inside sources have now reportedly revealed that Philbin’s contract with ABC recently expired and the morning show star was told that his salary (which was then between 18 and 20 million) would be cut. Regis didn’t like it, so he fired his agent and quit the show. [Source: “Regis Philbin Quit Over Pay Cut,” TMZ.com, 1/22/11. Downloaded from: http://www.tmz.com/2011/01/22/regis-philbin-kelly-ripa-retired-live-with-regis-and-kelly-contract-negotiation-18-20-million-dollars-a-year-renegotiate-agent/]
So, apparently, Regis Philbin’s departure comes down to money. It is odd that he would quit his show over money for several reasons: First, at his age he is unlikely to develop another show as successful as this one has been. Second, he already has more money than any person needs; even if his salary were cut in half, he would be making at least $9 million. Third, Philbin really seems to enjoy appearing on the show, and I think he will miss it.
It is not unusual for people to quit over money, though (both celebrities and non-celebrities), so I suppose we should not be too surprised. Best of luck to Regis Philbin in whatever he does now; he should have enough money to have a really nice retirement.
“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
“Regis Philbin Quit Over Pay Cut,” TMZ.com, 1/22/11. Downloaded from: http://www.tmz.com/2011/01/22/regis-philbin-kelly-ripa-retired-live-with-regis-and-kelly-contract-negotiation-18-20-million-dollars-a-year-renegotiate-agent/