Jimmy Kimmel Honors Regis Philbin Ahead of 'Who Wants to Be a Millionaire' Season Premiere
By Jennifer Drysdale
Richard Cartwright/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images
Jimmy Kimmel is looking back at Regis Philbin's incredible legacy on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?. Kimmel, who currently hosts the game show, reflects on his time with the late star in a new clip ahead of Millionaire's upcoming season.
Philbin was the show's first-ever host in 1999, and held the role until 2002. He also hosted three additional special event series that aired on ABC in 2004 and 2009. Throughout the years, Meredith Vieira, Cedric the Entertainer, Terry Crews and Chris Harrison have served as hosts.
"I’m hosting this show, but this is his show," Kimmel says in the clip, released on Thursday. "Ultimately, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, it's like he left me a beautiful car.
The clip shows footage of Phlibin's time on the series, as well as his conversation with Kimmel on set before his death.
"No one will ever be better at doing this than you," Kimmel told Philbin at the time. "That’s why people love this show. It’s a great game, but Regis is the reason.”
Philbin died in July. He was 88.
"Regis was a great broadcaster, a good friend and a tremendous amount of fun," Kimmel wrote on Twitter at the time. "He leaves behind a beautiful family and a TV legacy that will likely go unmatched. Regis, I hope our friend Rickles met you at the pearly gates with open arms and a slew of the insults you loved so much."
Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? premieres Sunday on ABC.