But RadarOnline.com can exclusively reveal that the 46-year-old’s big smile was all a front, as the A-list host and producer, 42, was NOT her first choice.
The decision to hire Seacrest was “ultimately ABC president Ben Sherwood’s call,” a well-connected network insider revealed.
Meanwhile, the difficult Ripa “preferred someone less well-known.”
“She wanted someone that she could boss around, and that isn’t Ryan,” the source continued. “He’s as big of a star as she is!”
As fans know, Ripa has been hosting the popular ABC show solo for about a year — since her former cohost, Michael Strahan, infamously quit last April and left the mother of three in a rage.
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