A beloved TV personality known for his emotional outbursts and uniquely inflected speech, Philbin first came to national prominence as Joey Bishop's sidekick on the comedian's eponymous late-1960s talk show. It took another decade of various on-air gigs before Philbin hit it big as the host of WABC's local Manhattan morning show in 1983. Kathie Lee Gifford joined him as co-host in 1985, and in 1988 their series, renamed Live with Regis and Kathie Lee
, went into national syndication and turned them into superstars. Over the years, Philbin was tapped to host a number of other shows (Walt Disney specials, prime-time game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire
) and appeared as himself in countless movies and television shows. He also weathered Gifford's 2000 departure and found great chemistry with her replacement, Kelly Ripa. In 2004, after over 15,000 hours on national television, Philbin entered the record books as the most filmed personality ever. All of those TV hours eventually took a toll on the energetic host, as he had to undergo hip-replacement surgery in 2009---though Philbin was back at work on Live
just a few weeks later.Regis Philbin Fast Facts:
- Named after his father's alma mater, Regis High School in Manhattan.
- Served in the U.S. Navy 1953-55.
- Began his broadcasting career in 1955 as a news and sports writer at KCOP in Los Angeles.
- Famously walked off the set of The Joey Bishop Show during a 1968 broadcast in a disagreement with management, but returned three days later.
- Appeared as himself in a movie for the first of many times in Woody Allen's Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex (1972).
- Penned the memoirs I'm Only One Man! (1995) and Who Wants to Be Me? (2000).
- Achieved prime-time success in 1999 when he began hosting the hit ABC game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.
- Won his first Daytime Emmys in 2001, for Outstanding Talk Show Host (Live with Regis) and Outstanding Game Show Host (Who Wants to Be a Millionaire).
- Returned to prime time to host two seasons of the game show Million Dollar Password, a Password update that ran 2008-09 on CBS.
- Regis Philbin Relationships:
- Florence Philbin - Mother
- Frank Philbin - Father
- J.J. Philbin - Daughter
- Joy Philbin - Wife
- Amy Philbin - Daughter
- Daniel Philbin - Son
- Joanna Philbin - Daughter
- Kay Faylan - Ex-wife
- Frank Philbin - Brother
- Notre Dame University, South Bend, IN (BA, 1953)