"I knew when I saw his photograph," Kelly Ripa revealed

By Natalie Stone
August 15, 2018 06:49 PM
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It was love at first sight when Kelly Ripa first laid eyes on Mark Consuelos.

This year, the couple celebrated 22 years of marriage, but Ripa still remembers the moment she first saw her husband.

“I saw my husband in a photograph before I saw him,” Ripa, 47, told Bruce Bozzi for his SiriusXM Radio Andy show “Lunch with Bruce” on Tuesday. “I knew when I saw his photograph.”

The couple met when Ripa auditioned Consuelos, 47, for his role as Mateo Santos on soap opera All My Children, on which she starred as Hayley Vaughan.

“They had been looking for this character for some time. They were looking really for a Latino actor, not an actor that was like — they didn’t want like a dark-haired guy. They wanted a Latino actor,” said Ripa. “And so I had auditioned every Latino actor in the city and around the city and then California. And then all of a sudden, Judy Blye Wilson, who was the casting director at All My Children, said, ‘I found him.’ ”

At the time, Consuelos had just graduated college and was a “green” actor who hadn’t done much work.

“[Judy] showed me his picture and, Bruce, I’m not this person, at that point I was not a hopeless romantic. I never thought about getting married, it never occurred to me that I would grow old with someone. I just thought I would be living my single girl life in the city and sort of like moving. You know, if I needed to up and move to a location, I could do that. I had no responsibilities and I was earning a good living on this soap opera because I was there for almost seven years before Mark got there. … I was a baby when I got the job.”

When Ripa gazed at Consuelos’ photograph, she saw her “entire future with him flash before” her eyes.

“When I saw him, the photograph of him, I saw my entire future with him flash before — like I saw it,” said Ripa. “And I don’t believe in any of that and now I do because of that moment.”

More than two decades later, the couple shares three children — sons Michael, 21, and Joaquin, 15, and daughter Lola, 17 — together and their marriage is stronger than ever.

Reflecting on their meet-cute, Consuelos told HuffPost Live of Ripa, “I thought she was adorable, hot and sexy and all that stuff, but I was very focused — I didn’t really think I had a chance with her, so I wasn’t really focused on that.”

The chemistry was so apparent, Consuelos was offered the gig much to the delight of Ripa.

“I was drawn to Mark because he was positively an alpha male, and I didn’t think I would be drawn to that. But I just worship him,” the Live with Kelly and Ryan co-host told ELLE in 2013.