Talk Show Takeover! Mario Lopez Gunning For Ellen DeGeneres’ TV Spot

Feb. 25 2019, Updated 11:34 a.m. ET

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TV host Mario Lopez is gunning for Ellen DeGeneres’ talk show chair, RadarOnline.com can exclusively reveal.

Lopez, 45, recently filled in for DeGeneres during her two-week vacation — and he’s launched a charm offensive to win the gig full-time!

“He was allowed to sit in the hot seat and it went very well,” snitched an industry spy.

“Now Mario’s focused on impressing everyone at the show.

He’s not an obvious choice to take over from Ellen, but Mario has more than enough experience, and he’s desperate to move on to something bigger than Extra.”

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Although DeGeneres, 60, has no immediate plans to retire, she’s been spending more time with wife Portia de Rossi, 45, outside of L.A., and less time in the public eye.

A second source squealed: “Ellen wants to make sure that when she does retire, the show won’t suffer, and her chair goes to someone that she approves of.”

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