Regis Philbin was certainly more than that guy who hosted that morning show for 25 years and that game show where people could win a million dollars. That’s how most of us knew him as, but he actually started his career back in the early days of television, when he was a page at NBC for The Tonight Show before eventually becoming a sidekick for The Joey Bishop Show. This lead to loads of other hosting gigs, that in turn did lead to the two gigs we best know him for. But no matter how you remember him, he was certainly a television legend.
After his passing Saturday, various late night hosts paid tribute to him. First up, Jimmy Fallon took a minute out of The Tonight Show to pay tribute to Philbin, talking about how he never lost his Irish roots and labeling him as “the King of New York”.
Seth Meyers also paid tribute to him (albeit briefly) on Late Night w/Seth Meyers. He talked about how he was able to maintain his trademark contagious enthusiasm for so many years, and adding that he was “exactly the same in person as he was on television.”
Finally, Conan O’Brien (whose show is dark this week) paid tribute to Philbin by posting a clip from the old Late Night days. In the clip, Regis and Andy Richter bond over both being sidekicks, Philbin talks about the time he walked off (and subsequently came back to) The Joey Bishop Show, and cradles Andy in his arms as he sings him an Irish lullaby. No, really. That happened, and it was just as amazing and hilarious as you could imagine. One of the finest Andy Richter moments from the Late Night show as well.