Kelly Ripa reveals new bombshells about working conditions during first years on 'Live' with Regis Philbin, plus more news

Kelly Ripa says she had to line up with audience members for the bathroom while co-hosting ‘Live’

Kelly Ripa is revealing multiple new bombshells about her first years co-hosting “Live!” with Regis Philbin, from ABC’s alleged refusal to give her an office — she worked out of a janitor’s closet for years — to sharing a public audience bathroom when Regis had a private one. “It was the strangest experience I’ve ever had in my life. I was told that I couldn’t have an office. It didn’t make a whole lot of sense, especially because there were empty offices that I could have easily occupied,” Kelly tells Variety, adding that she was told the empty offices were “reserved for executives visiting from the West Coast.” After her “fourth year,” she says, “they finally cleaned out the [janitor’s] closet and put a desk in there for me.” When Regis announced his retirement on the air (without giving Kelly a heads up), she says she was still not given a real office. “They said, ‘Oh, no, we’re saving that.’ And I said, ‘Saving it for what?’ And they go, ‘Well, for when the new guy comes.’ And I looked at them, and I said, ‘I am the new guy,'” she recalls. “I just moved my things. I forced my way into the office …”

Her bathroom access during those first years on the show were also memorable. “Picture this: We have a studio audience, like 250 people, and I have to queue up,” she recalls. “Particularly when I was pregnant, it was extraordinarily exhausting to have to wait in line. I have to host the show, and I’m still waiting in line to use the bathroom. It just seemed, you know, a very needlessly difficult situation.” Audience members in long alongside her “couldn’t believe it either,” she said.

Kelly, who reportedly now earns “in the range of $20 million a year” on the show, welcomes a new “Live!” co-host starting April 17 — her husband, Mark Consuelos.

Keep reading for more news …

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North West, 9, could be the Kardashian family’s next skincare mogul

At just 9 years old, North West could soon be ready to launch her own skincare line, thanks to her mom, Kim Kardashian’s careful strategizing. Kim had already filed to trademark the names of all four children she shares with ex Kanye West via her LLC. But an update was made to North’s trademark paperwork in March, according to Page Six, which reports the 9-year-old’s application covers her name as branding for “moisturizers, skin serums, facial oils, bath gels, nail polish, shampoo, hair gel and more” beauty products, plus a variety of toys. North’s already doing a good job building her target customer base, too, courtesy of the often hilarious skincare and makeup tutorials she’s shared with her 15 million TikTok followers. Besides, it’s hardly a leap to assume North could be clamoring to take after her mom, who founded KKW Beauty (now SKKN by Kim), or aunt, Kylie Cosmetics creator, Kylie Jenner, at 9. After all, this is a kid whose backyard play set included a tot-sized KKW Beauty boutique when she was 7.

MORE: Catch up on the biggest bombshells from Season 2 of ‘The Kardashians’ before the Season 3 premiere

Dwayne Johnson’s entire head is pink after getting a ‘manicure’ from his daughter

Back in 2021, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson told People he and his wife, Lauren Hashian, are raising their young daughters in “an environment and a culture where there are no limits to life.” This, we presume, is a case in point! The “Black Adam” star shared a hilarious photo series on Instagram this week to show off the creative and colorful makeover he got from one of his little girls. (Dwayne and Lauren share daughters Jasmine, 7, and Tiana, 4; The Rock’s also dad to Simone, 21, from his previous relationship with Dany Garcia.) The pics start with Dwayne seated in a small chair before his daughter as she paints his nails pink … a nice compliment to his face, neck and scalp, all of which are also pink. Subsequent selfies show Dwayne and Lauren’s little makeup stylist has also given her dad a skinny, curly-Q mustache above his lip and some sparse hairs on his chin suggesting a beard over and around the pink paint. “What starts off as ‘Daddy it’ll just be a manicure’ 💅🏽💀,” he captioned the post.

Minnie Driver thrilled to forgo subway and flip flops for latest project

Minnie Driver was singing professionally long before her acting career took off, but her voice takes centerstage in a whole new way in her new project, “The Lesser Dead.” The new dramatic podcast, out on Wondery+ this week, sees the “Good Will Hunting” alum delve into horror as she plays a vampire in New York City circa 1978. “No pun intended, I’m a sucker for a really original story,” Minnie recently told UPI of the project. “For people for whom the horror, supernatural thing isn’t their deal, this might be because it’s such a clever idea.” Based on Christopher Buehlman’s novel of the same name, “The Lesser Dead,” features Minnie’s Margaret character as the matriarch of her vampire community, which sucks the blood of subway commuters, but allows them to live, unlike a rival clan of vampires known as “The Family.” “There’s a kind of justice that you can understand. You can’t say that they’re not hurting anyone because they are, but they’re not as terrible as The Family,” she says. While acting on a podcast instead of on-camera presented some new challenges, she says there were also plenty of advantages, particularly given the premise — not to mention, the book’s descriptions of her outfit choices for those underground blood-sucking sessions. “I’m glad to have not been in the subways and the flip-flops,” she says.

Madonna announces Nashville benefit concert for trans rights amid anti-drag legislation

Madonna’s “Celebration” tour will now include a stop in Nashville, with proceeds from the show earmarked to benefit trans rights groups. A longtime advocate forLGBTQ+ rights, the singer, 64, announced the concert this week in response to Tennessee’s new legislation criminalizing drag performances in public places or in the presence of children. The Queen of Pop also vowed to bring her “RuPaul’s Drag Race” Season 8 winner Bob the Drag Queen — her special guest on the tour — onstage with her at the Nashville show on Dec. 22. at the Bridgestone Arena. Tennessee’s anti-drag law goes into effect July 1.

“The oppression of the LGBTQ+ is not only unacceptable and inhumane; it’s creating an unsafe environment; it makes America a dangerous place for our most vulnerable citizens, especially trans women of color,” Madge said in a press release. “Also, these so-called laws to protect our children are unfounded and pathetic,” she added. “Anyone with half a brain knows not to f*** with a drag queen. Bob and I will see you from the stage in Nashville where we will celebrate the beauty that is the queer community.” Her announcement comes on the heels of Bridgestone Arena’s recent Love Rising concert, which saw singers like Sheryl Crow, Maren Morris and Jason Isbell raise funds to support Tennessee’s LGBTQ+ community.

Prince Harry says royal family withheld phone hacking information from him

Prince Harry is in London this week for High Court hearings in his case against British publisher Associated Newspapers Ltd. According to a witness statement in the case, the Duke of Sussex says the royal family kept important information from him about his phone allegedly being hacked by News of the World in 2005. Harry said he believes he and his brother, Prince William, were intentionally kept in the dark about their information allegedly being hacked because of his family’s policy of avoiding controversy.”The Institution was without a doubt withholding information from me for a long time about NGN’s phone hacking and that has only become clear in recent years as I have pursued my own claim with different legal advice and representation,” Harry said (per ET), referring to his family. “The Institution had a strict ‘no comment’ policy which meant that even the worst or most suspicious articles were often never brought to my attention,” he shared elsewhere in the document. According to the statement, Harry didn’t discover how much of his privacy had really been breached until after he stepped down as a senior working royal in 2020.

“When my relationship with Meghan, my now wife, became public, I started to become increasingly troubled by the approach of not taking action against the press in the wake of vicious persistent attacks on, harassment of and intrusive, sometimes racist articles concerning Meghan,” Harry said in the statement. “The situation got worse after she became pregnant and when our son, Archie, was born.” Harry’s privacy breach allegations are part of a larger case against the publisher that also involves similar claims from Elton John, Liz Hurley and Sadie Frost, among other stars. Associated Newspapers has so far denied any wrongdoing, the BBC reported on Tuesday (March 28).

Keanu Reeves goes viral for carrying ‘John Wick’ crew’s gear on set

The internet’s boyfriend, Keanu Reeves, is going viral again now that “John Wick: Chapter 4” is in theaters. The latest evidence that the star is an A+ human in addition to being easy on the eyes comes via a video shot on the set of the new action flick that shows Keanu carrying equipment for the production crew members. To be fair, though, he probably had time to kill when he picked up the gear, given the amount of dialogue he has in the film. According to The Wall Street Journal, Keanu’s character, John Wick, utters only 380 words over the course of the film, which runs just under three hours at 169 minutes. He also says more in the movie’s trailer than he does in the film’s first 25 minutes. Co-writer Michael Finch tells the outlet Keanu himself, along with director Chad Stahelski, “stripped out roughly half the dialogue written for [Keanu’s] character.” The screenwriter added, “it’s a shock when you work with him how dedicated he is to not speaking.”

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