The 40-year-old host of FOX-TV’s “The Masked Singer” will quarantine and rest, a representative for the star told the media outlet.
In the meantime, FOX has tapped actress and “Claws” star Niecy Nash to temporarily take his spot for the first few episodes of the singing competition’s fifth season, which is scheduled to begin production on Thursday, Feb. 4. Nash had previously appeared on the show’s fourth season as a guest judge.
Cannon has not yet publicly spoken about his diagnosis. However, Variety reported that he is expected to resume his hosting duties later in the season.
In January 2012, the “Love Don’t Cost a Thing” star was diagnosed with lupus, an autoimmune disease also known as lupus nephritis. At the time, the actor was experiencing symptoms of fatigue and swelling in his knees before a vacation in Aspen that worsened while he was there. Upon returning from his trip, the actor sought medical assistance and was hospitalized on Jan. 4, 2012. Tests later confirmed the diagnosis.
Cannon spoke candidly about his illness during a 2018 interview. The star explained that maintaining a stress-free life has played a vital role in minimizing the number of flareups he’s experienced.
“I remember those days, being in the hospital. We’re so often caught up in the hustle and bustle of life, and in always wanting more, but you realize just how much you take for granted when everything’s taken away from you,” Cannon said at the time. He added, “Be present. Be grateful to wake up each day.”
Cannon’s COVID-19 diagnosis also comes on the heels of reports that his daytime television talk show is set to debut after it was postponed due to comments he made and later apologized for that were deemed anti-Semitic.
Following the announcement, the actor released a statement in which he said, “It’s been a longtime dream of mine to host my own daytime talk show and that I’m able to do this in New York City, bringing daytime television back to the place that has fostered generations of talent is very special to me.”
He added, “With this show, we’ll be uniting all aspects of entertainment in a unique way in the very place where a lot of what we know today as our culture started. I couldn’t ask for better partners than Debmar-Mercury and Fox and thank them for supporting me in this endeavor.”