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Salary-Unhappy Regis Philbin May Be Replaced by Ryan Seacrest

January 24, 2011 (3:00 am) GMT
'Live with Regis and Kelly' may soon be changed to 'Live with Ryan and Kelly' after it is reported that executives are negotiating with the 'American Idol' host.

Regis Philbin's sudden exit from the talk show that paid for his life expenses for 28 years still remains a mystery to a lot of people. TMZ reported that he's quitting "Live with Regis and Kelly" over salary cut which would be affective after his current contract expires.

Sources say Reg is making between $18 and $20 million a year but the show is not performing as well as in the past. That, combined with the fact that Regis takes a lot of time off, reportedly led the executives to the decision to decrease his salary. When his agent Jim Griffin told him this, Regis was angry and fired him for not negotiating effectively.

Regis allegedly also told co-host only 15 minutes before the episode where he made the departure announcement went on air. "She felt it showed a total lack of respect for her," a source said. The crew are also upset that Regis had blindsided them with the rash announcement.

Now the talks have moved on to who will replace him. is the first name to pop up mainly because the current "" host is a fan of Regis. "Regis is one of the guys I looked up to all my career," Ryan said recently. "I think he's fantastic." According to Extra's sources, Ryan's contract with "Idol" would expire for the first time in years soon.

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