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Interview with Simon Cowell and Mel B
of "America's Got Talent" on NBC 7/25/16
Moderator: Natalia Desrosiers
25, 2016 5:26 pm CT
Operator: Ladies and gentlemen,
thank you for standing by. Welcome to the America’s Got
Talent conference call with creator Judge Simon Cowell and
Judge Mel B, press and media.
During the presentation
all participants will be in a listen-only mode. Afterwards
we will conduct a question and answer session. At that time
if you have a question, please press the 1 followed by the 4
on your telephone.
If at any time during the
conference you need to reach an operator, please press Star
zero. As a reminder, this conference is being recorded
Monday, July 25, 2016. I would now like to turn the
conference over to Natalia Desrosiers . Please go ahead
Natalia Desrosiers: Thank you. And thank you
everyone for joining the call today. As (Kelma) said, we
have our creator and Judge Simon Cowell and Judge Mel B. We
are enjoying our highest rated season in five years and have
some of the best acts that we've seen in the show's history.
Please don't be shy with your questions. We will try to
get through all of them. Please know that we're here to talk
about AGT so please keep your questions to the show. We are
ready to go ahead (Kelma).
Operator: Thank you.
Ladies and gentlemen, if you would like to register a
question, please press the 1 followed by the 4 on your
telephone. You will hear a three-toned prompt to acknowledge
If your question has been answered and
you would like to withdraw your registration, please press
the 1 followed by the 3. If you are us3ing a speakerphone,
please lift your handset before entering your request. One
moment please for the first question.
Thank you. Our
first question comes from the line of Jamie Ruby with
scifivision.com. Please proceed with your question.
Jamie Ruby: Hi guys. Thanks for talking to us today. It's
nice to talk to you again.
Simon Cowell: Likewise.
Mel B: Lovely.
Jamie Ruby: So I know obviously
it's hard for you guys regardless to kind of decide who's
moving on. But I've always been curious. Sometimes like when
I watch it, I know it - some things to me seem so hard to
compare different types of acts like singing to magic or,
you know, things that are so different.
Is there like
a certain like type of criteria or way that you kind of
figure that out because I don't know? To me like it's hard
to kind of reconcile which is better because they're so
Simon Cowell: Mel, do you want
to go first?
Mel B: No, you go first.
Cowell: Okay. Well it's a good question. I'll tell you what
happens. I mean, like you said, there is no way any judge in
the world can be an expert on everything. And we're judging
everything from dogs to jugglers to singers.
sometimes - actually not sometimes - a lot of the times you
have to put it down to do you want to see that act again and
do you think that they can improve and how are you feeling
in that moment to be honest with you. Because I do look back
on the show sometimes with the people we do put through.
And I'm thinking, what were you thinking at the time? I
mean there's no logic to it. But I think that's what makes
this show fun. There are no kind of rules and there's no,
like scoring system you could possibly use when you're
judging some of these crazy acts.
Jamie Ruby: Okay.
Mel B: Do you want me to add onto that?
Cowell: What do you think Mel? Yes.
Mel B: Yes. I
mean I - I mean I basically judge on if I'm entertained or
not no matter what their act is whether it's a danger act, a
singer - I mean, or something that's just really abstract
that I've never seen before.
If I'm entertained, if I
say to myself, “Oh my God, I would pay to go watch that show
in Vegas,” then I'm going to vote yes all day long.
Jamie Ruby: Okay. Great. And then as a follow up, the other
thing I was kind of wondering is obviously the audience gets
to see the kind of clips about the people before they go on
stage. Do you guys, like, know anything about the people
before they come out? Do you have any, like, notes that
you've gotten or do you really just find out when they say
hi, I'm such and such and this is what I'm doing?
Simon Cowell: Nothing. I mean…
Mel B: It's a
Simon Cowell: …I ask for them to tell us
absolutely zero about anybody. And look, sometimes they
might say there's something so sensitive, don't go there.
But that's really…
Jamie Ruby: Right.
Cowell: …really rare. Our job, funny enough - when we talk
to them on stage, is to find out what we can and what they
want to tell us - and not knowing makes it much more fun and
interesting for us and the audience sitting behind us I
think. But then of course…
Cowell: …the audience at home to know everything that we
Jamie Ruby: Right. Okay. Do you have
anything to add Mel?
Mel B: No. I was just about to
say that. Simon took the words out of my mouth.
Ruby: Oh. Okay. Well…
Mel B: I mean, I am a very,
very nosy person. So I like to find out a bunch of stuff
before they act. And I think the audience appreciates that
because we're seeing it just like they are for the very
first time. And I think that comes across.
Ruby: Okay. Okay. Well thank you so much both of you.
Simon Cowell: Yes. Thanks for your questions.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Stephanie
Piché with Mingle Media TV. Please proceed with your
Stephanie Piché: Thank you. Hi Simon and
Simon Cowell: Hi.
Mel B: Hi.
Stephanie Piché: How you doing?
Mel B: Good.
Simon Cowell: Good thank you.
Mel B: Good, good.
Stephanie Piché: So my first question is kind of
following on the previous caller. I was wondering are there
some key indicators that you look for when evaluating the
success of the act being a long-term success. I mean there's
a one hit wonder but, you know, for them developing new
content, do you think about that while you're evaluating
Simon Cowell: Mel, you can go
first on this.
Mel B: I mean I don't because I like
to just like react to what I'm seeing there and then. You
know, Heidi sometimes says, “But what are you going to do
next?” And to me I don't care what they're going to do next.
All I know is I'm in that moment and I'm thoroughly
And sometimes I think to myself it's
better left unsaid and it's better not to even ask. So it is
more of a surprise the second time round because sometimes
even though they seem like a one hit wonder, they can pull
some stuff out of the bag in the next - the next time that
you see them that you wouldn't have even thought of.
Stephanie Piché: Sure. Okay. Okay. Simon.
Cowell: Yes. I mean I agree actually with what Mel said. I
think in this day and age it's almost impossible to predict
that kind of stuff because so many factors have to happen
after the show.
I mean if you look at One Direction
or Susan Boyle, I mean I don't think any of us when we first
worked with both acts could have possibly have predicted
what was going to happen next.
And a lot of time to
be able to - it comes down to the act. It's got to be in
them that they are going to push and fight for a successful
career afterwards. And some people do it and some people
And sometimes when we're sitting doing the
audition - with Grace as an example - this is the little
girl who played the ukulele - and she had this massive
response of the show. Genuinely on the day I thought she was
good. I didn't think she'd get that response.
Simon Cowell: It really took me by surprise. I
mean I was happy for her. But the same thing with Tape Face.
I mean I thought yes, that was funny. And then he gets like
30, 40 million hits on YouTube or something. You just can't
predict (things) anymore.
Mel B: He went viral big
Simon Cowell: Yes. Which is good. I like that.
Stephanie Piché: So a quick follow up to my question
again is as it relates to this season, what are you seeing
that's made the season so hot for viewers to watch on TV
outside of the temperature outside?
Well let's start with Mel on that one but I think I know the
Mel B: No. Let's start with you Simon.
Simon Cowell: No, no darling. I'll follow you.
Mel B: Please.
Simon Cowell: What? Yes. I'll follow
Mel B: What was the question again so I can just
Simon Cowell: Why is the
show so much better this year?
Mel B: …in a nice way
rather than making it all about myself.
Has anybody in particular made a difference? I think that
was sort of her question.
Mel B: I mean…
Stephanie Piché: I didn't say it that way but yes.
Mel B: …(for me). You know, I think I - I mean I love Simon.
And yes, I'm here on the phone and I will say - you heard it
from me - I love working with Simon. And with Simon you
don't know what to expect. But you know with all of his
experience and his personality - he's a very loveable guy by
the way. I'm just happy that he's on this panel. I think he
adds so much.
And I know from what people are telling
me like the public and my friends and just in general,
people are warming to Simon so much. And I don't think they
expected him to be like this. I mean I expected him to be
like this because I know Simon. But I really think his
addition has like taken it to a whole new level. And Simon,
don't get a big head and start repeating this. Okay?
Simon Cowell: I don't need to repeat it. I'm actually not
going to say anything after that. You kind of said it all.
Mel B: There you go.
Stephanie Piché: Perfect.
Thank you so much.
Simon Cowell: I do love you Mel.
And actually you know what really makes a difference - I
mean I'm teasing Mel and but I do agree with her - is the
acts actually - the show is all about the acts. And I think
what's happened is that the - we've been able to attract
better music acts, which you do need in a mix on a show like
this. And also it has to be fun, this show.
Simon Cowell: If you ever get too serious
particularly in this day and age with so many - so much bad
news on the news and everything, (gosh) you got to have
escapism. And you've got to have a show where most things
end up well and they're fun. And that's why I think the show
has worked so well this year and it is a great panel. I have
to tell you.
Stephanie Piché: Great. No it is. I'm
enjoying it. Thank you so much.
Simon Cowell: Thank
you. Appreciate it.
Operator: Our next question comes
from the line of Michele Angermiller with Billboard. Please
proceed with your questions.
Hello Simon and Mel.
Simon Cowell: Hi.
Michele Angermiller: I have a question about -
hey guys. I have a question about the singers this season. I
think this has been a stronger season yet as far as - I mean
first you've had John Hetlinger who went viral with Drowning
Simon Cowell: Yes.
…and then he performed twice at the - I was sad to see him
go - understood why. But no…
Michele Angermiller: Why do - sorry. Why do you think
singers are so hot this season? And also, what's your
temperature on Sal? He was a former Idol guy.
Michele Angermiller: Sal. He did (this
Simon Cowell: Was he on Idol?
Michele Angermiller: He was - yes. He was on Idol. He was on
with - Adam Lambert pushed him -he was on the panel that put
him through - Brooklyn. And he was - I remember he had a
good run in Hollywood. But I guess like Harry didn't think
that - I guess, you know, Harry - how particular he is about
the standards or whatever. But he had such a huge reaction
on America's Got Talent.
Simon Cowell: Well maybe he
Michele Angermiller: I just think…
Cowell: …too good.
Michele Angermiller: Maybe. But
why do you think the singers are so hot this season?
Simon Cowell: Well, I think, you know, we did do a lot of
work in advance to tell a lot singers - all the singers in
fact to trust the show because, you know, the show's always
I don't think we've had enough good
singers turning up for the show in the past. So we all made
a huge effort this year. I did a lot of radio interviews
basically trying to put the message out look you can trust
the show. Singers can do well on this show as long as the
variety act - as well as the variety act.
And it was
a combination of that - the producers cast it very well.
People just wanted to be on the show. And they were judged
well on the show. You know, you could see that when you
watched the singers back. You know, you had a panel on who
really liked - I think unanimously the same kind of music,
which really helped.
Michele Angermiller: How did
everybody - how did you like it when you had Louis there on
Simon Cowell: Having what? Louis is great.
I mean it was so funny and it was so kind of odd, you know,
that he had auditioned for me five years ago. Now he's
sitting where I'm sitting judging other people and doing it
really well. I was really happy for him and he loved doing
Michele Angermiller: Well the One Direction guys
are going in the right direction. You got Liam with the solo
album. I don't know if you’ve heard the new music and I'm
sure it's awesome. But…
Simon Cowell: Yes. I mean
they're - we talking to all of them at the moment. And you
know what the great thing about these boys are - well not
all of them but most of them. They're incredibly loyal. And
you don't always expect that. Niall, Harry, Louis, amazing.
Michele Angermiller: Well thank you. This has been such
a fun season. I mean I know people that are watching it that
have never watched the show before.
Mel B: Yes.
Michele Angermiller: They're going crazy.
Cowell: You know what. I'm having so many people say that to
me this year. It's so strange.
Mel B: Ah, Simon.
Michele Angermiller: And the guy that is - with the
chain saw and swallowing the swords and everything, that's
Mel B: Oh.
Michele Angermiller: Do you
Simon Cowell: I like that
Michele Angermiller: How do you think
that would sell in Vegas though?
Mel B: (Terrifying).
That was absolutely…
Simon Cowell: I think they like
all that stuff in Vegas. I mean it's like watching a horror
movie. You kind of don't like it but you do like it and you
want to see more of it. I like the whole mix of the show
this year. I think they've done it very well.
think the final - I sat with the producers a couple of days
ago and we looked again at the people who've made the
finals. I mean there's so many people this year who could
win. And I think it's going to feel like a competition.
Everyone feels that they've got something stepped up for
the next round. But it's going to be interesting. The Kodak
Theatre is a very - well, the Dolby now. It's a very
intimidating place because of its kind of history. But I
think it's a brilliant theater. So I'm looking forward to
Michele Angermiller: And you're coming
Simon Cowell: Exactly. We're coming home.
Michele Angermiller: To Dolby. Thank you Simon. Always a
pleasure. Thank you Mel.
Simon Cowell: Likewise. Lots
Mel B: (Yes).
Operator: Our next
question comes from the line of Matt Carter with
CarterMatt.com. Please proceed with your question.
Matt Carter: Hi. Good afternoon Simon and Mel.
Cowell: You're scary Matt.
Mel B: Hi.
Matt Carter: Oh, thank you very much
Simon. That's very kind of you. I watch your stuff. What
country? So my first question for you is just we talked to -
we already heard a little bit about singers. And there are
still so many of them left in the competition this season.
So what do you think they individually do to
differentiate from each other and stand out to people voting
Simon Cowell: Mel.
Mel B: Well I
think it's all about being really clever with your song
choices. You know, because if you're going to choose a
popular song, which will always go down well, you have to
put your own twist on it. So I think just, you know, they've
got to really do their research and put their own stamp
especially if you're a singer.
But when I look at the
whole, you know, light show as a whole, you have everything
there from, you know, we've got a 90-year-old stripper.
We've got a footballer that does magic. We've got so many
different genres of acts that are really good and really
And, you know, the singing performances
and acts that have gone through are really, really good too.
And I think what's been great this season so far is
everybody's back-story like they really are hungry for this.
They're not just doing it because they're talented and
somebody told them to do it. They're actually on this show
to really, really win and be a serious competitor. And that
like raises up the stakes and raises up the ante especially
with live shows because with live shows anything can happen.
Simon Cowell: Is that it?
Matt Carter: Hello?
Mel B: That is it Simon.
Simon Cowell: Very good
darling. I like the fact that you started with the
Mel B: Yes. She's great. I mean
Simon Cowell: It's all about relating to
the (unintelligible) though isn't it? What?
(Was great). I said what other show do you get to see that
on but next to a singer?
Simon Cowell: Not many. But
they're always welcome. Matt, I think your point about the
singers is, you know, what I've noticed this year
particularly on the show is it's been a learning curve for
me - a big learning curve because I think the old rules are
starting to - are starting to go now.
You know, we -
there was a pattern when we first started these shows where
there was a kind of a formula for what people should or
shouldn't do. And I think now it's all about showing people
who you are. And if you've got the confidence in who you
are, you stick with it.
And we've seen a couple of
singers who have suddenly popped on the show like Brian
because he did what he felt passionate about and he took a
risk. And you never know what's going to work in the room or
what's going to work through TV. But this guy has really
popped and he's been honest.
And the one thing we -
Paul Telegdy said to me before we started this show - he
came over to the house and we had the judges, you know. And
the - and as he walked out the door, he said, “The one thing
I love about America’s Got Talent is that we're an inclusive
show.” And that stuck in my head.
And I think people
have seen with this show and it's an important (know this)
that everyone's got the confidence now to say this is who I
am, I'm proud of it. And that they're welcome on this show
because I don't get rules of talent shows - I've never
There's an age range or this or
that. You know, if you're talented and you're up for it. And
the 90-year-old guy proves that - the singer - he was
brilliant. Then goes on to one of the coolest bands in the
world. So, you know, I think that's what people - and
certainly what I like about the show this year. It feels
Mel B: It does.
Matt Carter: Another follow up. Just in talking a little bit
about Golden Buzzers and, you know, the judges - Golden
Buzzers in particular. Do you both think that there's a
little bit of an inherent disadvantage of going into these
live shows and that they've only performed, you know,
America once whereas everybody else has performed twice? Or
do you think that just having that attachment to each one of
you as judges is enough to kind of cancel that out?
Simon Cowell: Well, you know, that's a very good point Matt
because you can argue it's an advantage or a disadvantage
because like you said, you've had one less performance.
I like them a lot. I mean we - that started about four
years on the show in the U.K. and then we brought it over
here and it's very - it's interesting how much the audience
in the room love it. When they really like someone, they
start screaming Golden Buzzer, Golden Buzzer.
it's a badge of honor. I think it puts a certain amount of
pressure on the contestants. But I think it's good pressure.
So I think it's a good thing. And I think it's going to be
interesting now to see how the people who are in the judge
cup now compete with the people who have the Golden Buzzers.
So I think it makes it more interesting. So…
Well if I can add to that. I also make - I also think it
makes them feel that little bit more like confident. Like if
they had a little bit…
Simon Cowell: Yes.
B: …of self-doubt, hopefully it will have gone. I mean for
example, my Golden Buzzer Laura, she was so like timid and
almost a bit frail. Soon as she started to sing, I mean it
was almost like she couldn't even believe how great her
And the fact that she got that Golden
Buzzer, I think somewhere inside of her, you know - a
bridge. It's like yes, I've been approved ahead of time. And
I think it's going to - I think it's going to boost their
confidence a little bit.
Simon Cowell: And actually
what it really is it's just a real stamp to show how much
you like it. I think when you watch it back on the show; I
think it looks great that moment. I really like it.
Matt Carter: I totally agree. I probably watched some
unhealthy amount of times on YouTube and I love the addition
and I'm glad you guys brought it over to America. Thanks
both of you so much for your time.
Mel B: You're
Simon Cowell: Yes. And thanks for everything
you've done Matt. Appreciate it.
Mel B: Thank you. I
can't wait to see that group. What is it? The dance group
Malevo - Malevo, the George Lopez Golden Buzzer.
Simon Cowell: You like those don't you?
Mel B: They
were so good. Oh my God.
Simon Cowell: Yes. They are
Mel B: Yes.
Simon Cowell: Mel, let's not
make small talk darling.
Mel B: I am making small
talk. I like it.
Mel B: …haven't
you? Shut up.
Operator: The next question comes from
the line of David Criblez with Newsday. Please proceed with
David Criblez: Hey Simon. Hey Mel B.
How are you?
Mel B: Hi.
Simon Cowell: How are
David Criblez: Excellent. We're really excited
here on Long Island to have a contestant in the finals. And
I wanted to ask you about the - yes. Wanted to talk to you
about Sal a bit. He performed My Way. And he got an
interesting connection with the crowd. And I wanted to ask
both of you why you think he connected so well and how do
you see him doing going forward.
Simon Cowell: I -
you know what. I think…
Mel B: He was a…
Cowell: …this is - sorry Mel. I think it's one of my
favorite auditions of all time when I watched it back. I
mean his family and his…
Mel B: (Hello).
Cowell: …swagger and his confidence in the fact he's
flirting with all the girls. But you know what I loved about
him is that he's an old soul and he loves this kind of
I know what he's singing next actually and
it's going to surprise a lot of people. But I think it's
going to work. I love him. I love everything about that guy.
Mel B: He was…
Mel B: …his
personality was bigger than his voice almost.
Criblez: Right. Right. And how much do you think that has an
impact both when you have the personality matched with the
Simon Cowell: Well you have to…
Mel B: Well you have to be likeable and he was really
likeable. So it worked in his favor.
Absolutely. Absolutely. And do you - were you surprised that
he got the Golden Buzzer?
Simon Cowell: No I wasn't.
And I'm really happy that he got it even though he was
really confident. Every singer always in that moment
slightly doubt themselves a little bit. And, you know, he
did his thing and he's got his shtick. But when he got it,
you could see in his eyes and particularly with his family
how much it meant to him.
And I think, you know,
following, you know, Matt's question before, I think it's
important that he's in the next round with the Golden Buzzer
and he's got something to live up to now. And there's an
expectation. And he deserved it.
I thought the whole
- like I said, that whole clip particularly his cousin in
the wings. I mean you can make a show…
Mel B: Yes.
Simon Cowell: …with that family. They were amazing.
David Criblez: That's the absolute truth. And I think,
you know, obviously over three million views on YouTube and
people's reaction in the theater there proved that.
Simon Cowell: Yes. You could see that. People really like
him. And, you know, I really loved in him the moment when he
said, “I'm not here to compete. I'm here to win.” I always…
Mel B: Yes.
Simon Cowell: …love that in a
competition that people actually really want to win. And
that makes the show really exciting.
And you think he has a good shot?
Mel B: Oh yes.
Simon Cowell: I think he's got a shot, yes.
Criblez: Absolutely. Well thank you so much both of you. I
enjoy you. Simon, thanks for coming back to TV.
Cowell: Oh cheers. Appreciate that. Thank you.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line Tracy Swartz
with Chicago Tribune. Please proceed with your question.
Tracy Swartz: Hi. Thanks so much for chatting with us
Simon Cowell: How are you?
Mel B: Hi.
Tracy Swartz: Good. We have two
Chicago area acts this week - Laura, the opera singer and…
Simon Cowell: Yes.
Tracy Swartz: …Musicality, the
group from the Southwest side - the ensemble group. So Mel,
you mentioned Laura before but I'm curious looking back at
all the acts now, are you glad that she was your Golden
Mel B: Oh my God yes. Are you kidding me? I
mean just the fact that - I mean I said this earlier. She
was just so timid. And I actually got worried for her when
she was talking in the pre-chat - she wasn't actually going
to be able to deliver.
And then she started singing
and a whole new world opened. I mean I'm so glad that I hit
my Golden Buzzer for her. I mean yes. She was great. What
else can I say about her?
Tracy Swartz: And I'm
curious. You know, Musicality came on and they were the
final act to get the go ahead. Did you at all consider their
back-story and some of the pain that they sort of sang
through in this last audition?
Simon Cowell: Yes. It
really made - I mean the - one of the first questions was
about the back-stories. And, you know, they were very open
with us when they came on the stage and told us, you know,
where they were from, what life was like, you know, some of
the disadvantages they've had to deal with.
But - and
they used to rehearse in a stairwell and stuff like that.
And every single one of those people you could see it in
their eyes how much it meant to them. And the guy who was
the conductor and their musical director is a fantastic guy.
And they've really, really done well together.
they're the sort of group who you really want to do well.
And they work hard. They definitely improved from the first
audition to the second audition. And that's one of those
yeses you love giving because you could see how much it
meant to them.
And again, what I'm hearing through
the producers during the rehearsal is that they've stepped
up again. And, you know, this has given them the confidence
this show and the reaction they've had to carry doing. I
think they'll inspire a lot of people. I learned a lot about
the whole art education program here, which has been slashed
So it's important I think that a group
like this is represented and do well and they're fun. I like
Mel B: And I think as well, you know, you want
to kind of root for the underdog. And at the end of the day…
Simon Cowell: Yes.
Mel B: …it's down to America
to vote. So, you know, you want to have that story that
connects with people. And it's not a false story. That's
just the way that they live and, you know, they're dealing
with whatever's happened to them.
I mean the guy had
his sister killed, you know. I mean you just - you're
heartbroken after that.
Simon Cowell: Days before
Tracy Swartz: Right.
Mel B: Yes.
Simon Cowell: Yes. I mean it was tragic. But, you know,
you felt for him. And like I said, that's one of those
moments where you just love giving them a yes and watch the
reaction back on TV. They were fantastic. So I think both of
those groups from your area have got a shot in the next
Tracy Swartz: All right. Great. Well thank you
so much for your time.
Simon Cowell: No worries.
Mel B: (Thank you).
next question comes from Hal Boedeker with Orlando Sentinel.
Please proceed with your question.
Thank you. Thank you for all the entertainment this summer.
What do you think of Orlando juggler Viktor Kee's chances?
Simon Cowell: I like him. I really do. Again, you know,
his story, you know, when we found out about it afterwards
was very sad. But he's a real showman that guy. I could see
him in Vegas or somewhere.
I normally - if I'm being
honest with you, I can't bear those kind of acts. Soon as
someone says the word juggler it's oh God, this is going to
be awful. But he was brilliant. And he's such a fascinating
It's quite interesting because I've done this
show for ten years in England. And often after you've done
the auditions, you forget 90 percent of the people
afterwards because it's just a blur.
But on this show
and with people like him because they were so different, you
do remember them. And he's got an interesting personality.
Look, I think it's going to be tough for him up against some
of the better-known acts. But you never know on this show.
Hal Boedeker: And I look at these numbers for the social
media views, which are just astonishing. Do you think those
people have the edge?
Simon Cowell: Well, I don't
know what - I suppose yes. I mean if someone gets traction,
you know, on social media, there's a reason for it. And this
show was always designed, you know, to take advantage of
social media in the hopes that, you know - that you would
have that secondary window so that people get to know about
the acts that they've missed the show and they come back and
watch the show.
But that's not always the case that
they're going to win. The year that Susan Boyle got more
social media than I've ever seen in my life on an act - she
was the red-hot favorite in the final to win. And she got
beaten by a dance act who on the night was just better.
And no one expected that to happen. They're a group
called Diversity and they were amazing. So sometimes it
works for you and then other times on the night someone else
does better and then you don't win. So it's good
unpredictability I think.
Hal Boedeker: It's great to
have you back. How do you think you've changed as a judge?
Simon Cowell: I mean…
Mel B: Oh, let me tell you.
Simon Cowell: …I think I was edited badly years ago is
the honest truth. And I haven't always been rude. I mean
maybe at times I get a little bit frustrated. But I actually
like most of the acts but you just never saw that before I
Hal Boedeker: But bad editing, huh?
Simon Cowell: Well, I wouldn't say bad. I'd call it
Hal Boedeker: Thanks again.
Cowell: Okay. (Unintelligible).
Mel B: That was
Operator: Our last question comes from the
line of Will Mendelson with Us Weekly. Please proceed with
Will Mendelson: Hey guys. How are you
Simon Cowell: I'm good. How are you?
Mel B: Good. (How are you)?
Will Mendelson: Good.
Thanks. Thanks for taking the time to chat with us.
Simon Cowell: Well you've got the last question so this has
got to be a good one.
Mel B: I know.
Mendelson: Oh gosh. I feel like - no pressure or anything.
Simon Cowell: Yes.
Will Mendelson: But, you know,
everyone else has mentioned how many amazing acts there are
this season and, you know, I think this is why it's, you
know, personally my favorite season to, you know, watch as a
viewer. You know, for the both of you, who - if you had to
pick one act, who are you most excited to see and why?
Simon Cowell: Okay. Mel, you go first on this because
I've got to think about this one.
Mel B: This is
really, really, really hard. Because I mean when I look at
the list of, you know, all the 30, 40 people that are going
to be through to the live shows, they all hold like a - they
have a special place inside me because I've agreed with
nearly every single act that is going through.
have to say - like in the break in between interviews right
now, I was raving about the dance group that was George
Lopez's Golden Buzzer…
Will Mendelson: Yes.
Mel B: …Malevo, Malevo. They are - I mean I love a dance
group. Not everybody on the panel does. But the way that
they came out with such power and passion, it was just hot.
So I'm super excited to see these guys.
And yes, I
mean they're one of my favorites obviously apart from my own
Golden Buzzer. But yes, I cannot wait to see what they bring
to the stage because I know it's going to be on fire.
Will Mendelson: Totally.
Simon Cowell: You know
what. This is really difficult and it is a good question. I
was teasing you but it's a good question because I can't -
I'm sort of fascinated to see what the 90-year-old
stripper's going to do next. I mean I was never in this
position before. I mean does she take more off or does she
get the tassels to work this time.
Simon Cowell: I don't know. At the same time,
I'm obviously excited about the singers because that's an
important part of the show. And my own Golden Buzzer
Calysta, you know, I've got a soft spot for her because I
loved her story and I love her and I think she's really
good. I like Grace. I'm really curious to see what she's
going to do next.
Mel B: Yes.
Sal we've spoken about is a real (talent).
Simon Cowell: I like the guy who
drills things into himself. I like Tape Face. So there's not
many people who I'm disappointed about. Normally at this
stage there's about ten I actually care about. This year
fortunately there's a lot more than that.
there's going to be a lot of surprises because America's
taking over the show for the first time as from tomorrow so
we've completely lost control of it. So I'm fascinated to
see what they're going to do with it.
Yes. I'm real excited.
Mel B: And can I add to that?
What I'm excited to see is the kids because I do feel like
this season the kids have just popped out of nowhere with
such confidence. So I'm - I mean I'm really excited to see
what they're going to bring especially the two young
Will Mendelson: Oh my God. Yes, they're
Simon Cowell: And you know what. I think
this guy Brian who I talked about earlier and he wasn't, you
know, he hasn't got the biggest personality. He was quite
shy when he first performed with us. But he sang Creep in
the second round and I thought he was superb; really, really
good. I'm really excited to see what he's going to do
because he's a big singer and he's got great taste.
So like I said, I think there's going to be some surprises.
I've got no idea what's going to happen but I'm really
looking forward now to tomorrow.
Will Mendelson: Yes.
I mean too. Thank you guys so much.
Mel B: Thank you.
Simon Cowell: And thank
you everyone for your questions and coming on today. I
really appreciate it.
Operator: I will now turn the
call over to Natalia.
Natalia Desrosiers: Thank you.
Thanks everyone for taking the time to jump on the call
today. And just a reminder that we start our live show
tomorrow from the Dolby Theatre, starting at 8:00 pm. So we
hope you can join us. Thank you.
Simon Cowell: And
Natalia Desrosiers: Thanks you guys.
Mel B: Bye. Thanks guys. Thanks Simon.
Cowell: Thank you Mel.
Mel B: Thanks Natalia.
Simon Cowell: Bye darling. Thanks.
Mel B: See you all
Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, that does
conclude the conference call for today. We thank you for you
participation and ask that you please disconnect your line.
America’s Got Talent
delivering its most-watched season
in five years (averaging
13.4 million), up +8% vs. last year at this time (12.4
as this year’s #1 summer series on the Big 4
networks in 18-49 (2.1 rating) and total
viewers (13.4 million).
been the #1 entertainment telecast on the
Big 4 nets every week this summer, six of
six weeks to date.
discovered talent who are amassing hundred of millions of
- Grace VanderWaal – 120
million Facebook video views in one week
- Tape Face – 34.6
million YouTube views
- Caly Bevier – 9.1
million YouTube views
- Laura Bretan – 22.6
million YouTube views
- John Hentlinger – 8.6
million YouTube views
- Is heavily
time-shifted: the June 28 “Talent” jumped +2.6 million
viewers in “live plus three day” results, the biggest
L+3 lift for any primetime program on the Big 4 networks
all summer long.
- On July 5, delivered
its most-watched episode in nearly five years (12.8
million in “live plus same day”), best since the
season-six finale(14.4 million on Sept. 14,
- Is ranking as the
most-watched summer unscripted series for an 11th year
in a row.
Simon Cowell – A Biography
Simon Cowell is a record
company executive, a television and film producer, and a
global TV icon. Known for his eye for talent and candid
verdicts, Simon – born in 1959 in London – has completely
transformed popular culture through his entertainment
Simon’s joint venture with
Sony Music, Syco Entertainment, is one of the world’s
leading global music, film, and TV production companies and
is responsible for some of the most successful global music
and TV franchises. Artists signed to Syco Music include One
Direction, Little Mix, Susan Boyle, Ella Henderson, Il Divo,
Labrinth, Fifth Harmony, Fleur East and Collabro. Syco’s
television assets include two worldwide record- breaking
shows: The X Factor and Got Talent. In
2014, Cowell was awarded MipCom’s Personality of the Year
Award for his global transformation of popular culture
through his wide-reaching TV and music enterprise.
Cowell has received The Rose
d’Or Golden Jubilee Award and BAFTA’s Special Achievement
Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the
entertainment industry. He has also been awarded the
International Emmy Founders Award. In total, television
shows created by Cowell have received 23 awards including
eight National Television Awards and five BAFTAs. In 2015,
Cowell was honored with the Music Industry Trusts Award, the
British music industry’s most prestigious accolade, in
recognition of his contributions to the industry and many
charitable causes. Previous winners include Sir George
Martin, Annie Lennox and Sir Elton John.
Before starting Syco
Entertainment, Simon Cowell was an established record label
executive. He first appeared on television as a judge on the
UK talent show Pop Idolbefore launching American
Idol in 2002 where he lead the judging panel for 8
years. The X Factor, created by Cowell, premiered
in 2004 on ITV and has since gone on to be a national
television event, airing in 186 countries and being locally
commissioned in 56 territories. The X Factor has
created more international music stars than any other
television format with artists discovered by show having
sold more than 200 million records worldwide, including 200
No. 1s, and 380 Top 10 records.
As well as being a judge on The
X Factor, Cowell is also a judge on Britain’s Got
Talent and America’s Got Talent.The Got
Talent format is officially the world’s most successful
reality TV format of all time, airing in 186 countries
worldwide and holding the Guinness World Records title for
the highest number of adaptations, having been commissioned
in an impressive 68 territories worldwide. To date, Britain’s
Got Talent has won three National Television Awards and
two Royal Television Society Awards and America’s Got
Talent has been nominated for a Primetime Emmy. America’s
Got Talentcontinues to be the #1 summer series, with
the 11th season
currently delivering its most-watched season
in five years. In total,
more than one billion people tune in every year to watch Got
In 2014, Syco Music was
named the No. 1 A&R label in the UK for both singles and
albums and is home to internationally successful artists who
have sold more than 380 million records to date. Syco’s
artist roster includes One Direction, who have sold more
than 65 million records worldwide, have headlined four sold
out world tours which have sold more than 10 million tickets
and have won countless awards across the globe including the
IFPI for Global Recording Artist for three years in a row.
For his newest take on the
singing competition, Simon Cowell teamed up with Univision
Communication to create La Banda. The first season,
which aired this past fall, searched the US and Latin
America to put together the next Latino boyband. The winning
group, now known as CNCO, signed a recording contract with
Sony Music Latin and Syco Music. Season two, which will air
this fall 2016, is searching for the next great Latino group
with boys and girls.
In addition to music and TV,
Cowell has also extended into feature films. He has produced
a 3D concert documentary about One Direction entitled ‘This
Is Us.’ The film was the No. 1 movie worldwide for the
opening week box office. Additionally, Simon Cowell and the
Weinstein Co. produced ‘One Chance,’ a movie chronicling the
remarkable story of Britain’s Got Talent winner
Paul Potts. Most recently, Syco announced a long-term
animated development deal with Animal Logic, the animation
and visual effects studio behind films including The LEGO
Movie and Happy Feet. Syco currently has a number of film
projects in development.
Cowell is a devoted
supporter of The Association for Children’s Hospices,
Against Breast Cancer, The Health Lottery, Save The
Children, Comic Relief, Battersea Dogs Home, RSPCA, The K9
Angels, PETA, Hope Sanctuary Barbados, and Help For Heroes.
Cowell is a patron of Together For Short Lives, The Katie
Piper Foundation and the Linda Blair Sacred Heart
Foundation, as well as an Ambassador for Great Ormond Street
Hospital. In May 2015, he was made Vice President of
Shooting Star Chase. He has also been awarded Variety
International’s Humanitarian Award for his charitable work.
Mel B returns for her fourth
season as judge of “America’s Got Talent,” now in its
milestone 11th season.
Melanie Brown, best known to
audiences as the iconic Mel B of the Spice Girls, is a
chart-topping music artist, actress, author, television
personality and groundbreaking entrepreneur. Brown has
found a home on television across the globe — she made
television history when she joined “The X Factor” in the
U.K. as a judge sitting next to Simon Cowell, Cheryl Cole
and Louis Walsh. It’s her third #1 show on three different
continents, along with a stint as coach on Australian
spinoff “The Voice Kids.”
The versatile talent
competed on season five of the ABC hit series “Dancing with
the Stars,” where she came in second place with her partner,
Maksim Chmerkovskiy. She’s appeared on episodes of
“Hollywood Game Night,” “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” “Celebrity
Name Game” and “Whose Line Is It Anyway,” sharing her
winnings with charity. In theater, she headlined as Mimi in
a major production of “Rent” and appeared in a presentation
of “The Vagina Monologues.” She frequently co-hosts
national television talk shows, including “Today,” “Live
with Kelly & Michael” and, most recently, “The View.” Mel B
also voiced the character of Fury in the Disney animated
feature “Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast.”
Mel B’s brash persona was at
the core of the Spice Girl’s global success, racking up
worldwide record sales of $55 million, a Guinness Book of
World Records status for most #1 entries in the U.K. charts
and most consecutive #1’s for a new act. The group’s
enduring popularity brought about one of the most successful
concert tours of 2007-08 with the reunion trek grossing more
than $70 million. In 2012, the Spice Girls reunited in
London for a performance at the 2012 Summer Olympics closing
ceremony and for the premiere of “Viva Forever,” the musical
based on the songs of the Spice Girls.
Mel B currently resides in
Los Angeles with her husband and daughters. Follow Mel B on
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