10:30am PT by Michael O'Connell
Simon Cowell Extends 'America's Got Talent' Deal Through 2019
Not content with just one more summer of Simon Cowell, NBC has locked in the America's Got Talent judge for three more seasons of the show.
Announcing a deal with the franchise co-creator Tuesday, the new pact will keep Cowell on the network through at least 2019. Despite his creative role in the genesis of the stateside series, this past summer marked Cowell's first time in the cast. His addition coincided with five-year ratings highs for America's Got Talent, which wrapped up the off-season as broadcast's No. 1 summer series.
“It was terrific to see Simon in his judge’s chair this past season, bringing his unique expertise and enthusiasm to the show, night after night,” said NBC Entertainment alternative and reality group president Paul Telegdy. “His brilliance has made America's Got Talent the industry leader that it is today and his ability to evaluate and spot talent is unmatched, so we couldn’t be happier to have him seated at the judge’s table for the next three years.”
In August, NBC announced that America's Got Talent would return for a 12th cycle — with judges Cowell, Mel B, Heidi Klum and Howie Mandel as well as host Nick Cannon expected to return.
"America's Got Talent is a fantastic and — most importantly — fun show both to work on and to watch,” said Cowell. “NBC have been brilliant partners and the entire team who make this show are one of the best in the world. I've loved this past season and look forward to discovering more great talent together in the years to come."
Cowell's move to America's Got Talent marked his return to U.S. televisions after a nearly three-year hiatus. After leaving American Idol in 2010, the franchise that made him a household name, he served as a judge on three seasons of The X Factor before moving back to the U.K.
America's Got Talent is produced by FremantleMedia North America and Cowell's SYCOtv. “Simon really understands how to spot talent, but he also knows how to have fun,” added FremantleMedia North America entertainment programming president Trish Kinane. “We are delighted that he will be with us for the next three seasons, helping find the very best talent America has to offer.”
Cowell is repped by WME and Ziffren Brittenham. Ari Emanuel brokered the deal.