IN one of Hollywood’s longest-running feuds, Kathie Lee Gifford despises Kelly Ripa over an ugly incident that erupted between the former and current “Live” hosts more than a decade ago.
The two daytime divas publicly ignore each other, but a source says say that Kathie Lee has sent out an explosive message to her rival: “I’m a bigger star than you – show me some respect!”
Incredibly, Kathie Lee, 60, is still fuming over Kelly, 43, replacing her as co-host of “Live,” a source says.
“IT’S HARD TO BELIEVE, but almost every day Kathie Lee has something to say about Kelly,” revealed a TV insider. “She’s like a dog with a bone, she just can’t let it go
Kathie Lee left “Live” in 2000, and Kelly filled her spot alongside co-host Regis Philbin.
But all hell broke loose after Kelly discovered that Kathie Lee had secretly begun plotting with Regis to get her old job back and give Kelly the boot, The ENQUIRER reported in 2003.
Kelly fumed: “Tell her to get a life instead of trying to wreck mine.”
The drama unfolded as Kelly was attempting to negotiate a new contract before going on maternity leave for the birth of her third child.
The show’s ratings were sliding, and Kathie Lee was desperate to get back on the air because her post-“Live” career was faltering.
She was offered a chance to guest on “The View” and loved it, and that’s when she decided to try to return to “Live.”
She contacted Regis to plot her return, say sources. But Kelly got wind of her idea to “temporarily” fill in and exploded.
“It’s not going to happen!” she declared.
Confided a close source: “Kelly worried that if Kathie Lee did return and got huge ratings it would undermine her contract negotiations.
“And when Kelly landed a contract extension, she and the producers acted quickly to have Kathie Lee banned forever.”
Kathie Lee was irate and is seething to this day. But the talented mom of two bounced back in 2008, becoming a popular co-host of the “Today” show’s final hour.