Kevin Hart was scheduled to be the very first guest on Kelly Clarkson’s new daytime talk show, but was forced to cancel as he recovers from back surgery following last week’s horrific car accident.
During Wednesday’s taping of the debut episode of “The Kelly Clarkson Show”, the fledgling host had a special announcement to make about who’d be taking his place.
“As many of you know, Kevin was seriously injured in a car accident,” Clarkson told the studio audience. “He’s okay and recovering, but because he couldn’t be here, one of his good friends stepped the heck up. And I love him, ’cause I got real nervous my first show, I was like, ‘I’m so sorry you’re sick.'”
That friend: none other than Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Hart’s co-star in “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” and “Central Intelligence”, with Clarkson revealing that “he left his honeymoon — his wife probably hates me — to come here and take Kevin’s place.”
In a teaser from the upcoming series premiere, Johnson enters the studio carrying a large sunflower in his hand as the freaked-out audience delivers a cheer-filled standing ovation.
“I think they like you,” Clarkson tells her guest as the cheering winds down.
You can see the segment in its entirety in the in the debut episode of “The Kelly Clarkson Show”, premiering Monday, Sept. 9.