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Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest Confess They Nearly Shed Tears Before the Big Reveal

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Now that Kelly Ripa’s quest to find her ideal co-host is officially over, the TV queen and her comrade Ryan Seacrest are opening up about their first official day together.

“I’m telling you, when I walked out there today, I almost had a tear in my eye,” Seacrest says in the latest issue of People. “It really is such a special show and has a special relationship with the audience. And she is an amazing host and person.”

The Live star spent nearly a year auditioning 67 guest hosts before announcing that Seacrest had landed the coveted gig — a decision she’s clearly very happy with.

Jake Chessum

“It was that thing where I was like, if I start crying now, I am not going to be able to pull myself together,” says Ripa. “So I am just going to save it until afterwards because we need to not derail the show with our tears.”

  • For more on Kelly and Ryan, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday

Already a seasoned television host, radio personality, and producer, Seacrest says the job was one he’d had his eye on since Michael Strahan left for Good Morning America last May.

“I always thought this was the perfect job,” he says. “And partnership.”

Live with Kelly & Ryan airs weekdays (check local listings).