'Live!' Audience 'Disappointed' Over Kelly Ripa's Unplanned Absence

by Raphael Chestang 3:21 PM PDT, April 20, 2016
Playing 'Live!' Audience 'Disappointed' Over Kelly Ripa's Unplanned Absence

As Michael Strahan opened up about his Live! With Kelly and Michael departure during Wednesday's show, the audience was left to wonder about cohost Kelly Ripa's mysterious absence.

"People were a little disappointed she wasn't there," one audience member told ET.

WATCH: Michael Strahan Calls Dramatic 'Live!' Taping a 'Hard Day' for Everyone

"We thought she might be a little heartbroken," said another. "She was probably so depressed that she didn't come in."

In fact, Ripa may take the rest of the week off. A source says she "is pissed" because she was unaware of Strahan's deal to leave the show for Good Morning America until after shooting Tuesday's Live! episode -- the same day that the news became public.

Saturday Night Live alum Ana Gasteyer filled in for Ripa on Wednesday, which a source told ET was a last-minute decision. The actress was apparently called after 10 p.m. on Tuesday and asked to appear.

According to our source, Gasteyer was under the impression that Strahan's exit would not be addressed on the show Wednesday but that the 44-year-old Super Bowl champ changed his mind just minutes before going live.

WATCH: EXCLUSIVE -- Kelly Ripa Skips 'Live!' Appearance After Feeling 'Blindsided' by Michael Strahan's Exit Announcement

Upon initially discussing the news about his move to GMA, Strahan neglected to mention Ripa, but circled back later in the program to acknowledge his cohost of the past eight years.

"I didn't want to say it earlier, but I really want to thank, of course, Kelly Ripa, because Kelly welcomed me here and I've learned so much from her," Strahan said on-air. "She's just been an amazing influence on me, and this has truly changed my life to be here with her."

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Ripa's rep has not yet responded to ET's request for comment.