Broadcasting legend Regis Philbin visits his old home at 10News

Posted at 7:48 PM, Feb 21, 2018
and last updated 2020-07-25 17:36:43-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- Regis Philbin, the long-time talk show host who holds the Guiness Book world record for most hours on television, returned to his roots Wednesday with a visit to 10News.

"This was the beginning of it all," Philbin said upon beginning his tour. "It really was."

Philbin was briefly a news anchor in San Diego when Channel 10, then known as KOGO, approached him about taking over as anchor of the 6pm and 11pm news.

READ: Remembering Regis Philbin's ties to San Diego television history

"I said 'Well you know, I'll do anything for you, but I want to do a show on Saturday night.' So that's how it all started."

"The Regis Philbin Show" aired live from 11:30pm-1:00am every Saturday night. It was filmed in the same studio 10News still uses for its newscasts today.

Philbin acted as his own booker, writer, and producer. "It was only one person. Regis had no one," he joked.

"You think he had four guys like you? He had to do it himself!"

The format of "The Regis Philbin Show" included an opening chat, interviews with celebrities, and interaction with the audience, all elements which would become hallmarks of his future network shows.

Philbin lured many of the top celebrities to San Diego to make appearances, including Jerry Lewis, Ronald Reagan, Danny Thomas, and Liberace. The show ran from 1961 to 1965.

PHOTOS: Former 10News anchor Regis Philbin visits the 10News crew

"The show became a big hit so it was time to go to Hollywood, I guess. So I did," said Philbin.

Philbin moved his show to Los Angeles, before being hired in 1967 as the sidekick for a national talk show, "The Joey Bishop Show."

Philbin hosted a series of talk shows and game shows throughout 1970's and 1980's. He was paired with co-host Kathie Gifford in 1985 for a show in Los Angeles.

In 1988 the show was syndicated and Philbin continued to host the show until 2011.