Simon Cowell said he honestly has no idea who will replace him on “American Idol” after this year, but he has some thoughts.
During a conference call on Thursday, the departing judge said whoever fills his seat needs to have knowledge and not just the ability to be critical.
“I think over the years judges have been replaced by personalities,” said Cowell, who also jokingly said his replacement needs to be very handsome. “That in the long term will create problems because you’ve got to be able to spot a star. So whoever replaces me, my advice has always been, find somebody who actually knows what they are talking about and has actually experienced success in the music business.”
Cowell said was fairly certain that - despite rumors and reports to the contrary - Howard Stern has not been approached for the gig. The bristly Brit said he thought Stern had been pretty savvy with his approach – talking about the job on his radio show – but lacks the musical knowledge and background.
One person Cowell said he thought would be funny in the role is gossip blogger Perez Hilton.
“He’s got a good taste in music,” Cowell said. “He’s a personality. I mean, that could work.”
Cowell also addressed talk that he and new judge Ellen DeGeneres have been butting heads. He denied a report that he showed up an hour late for filming (it was more like 15 or 20 minutes, and because of a press conference, he said) and incurred the wrath of the talk show host.
Cowell said DeGeneres started judging during Hollywood week, which was tough, and he was there to offer his assistance.
“There was no fallout,” he said of his tardy arrival. “I was trying to guide her through the week and that was about it, really.”
He took pains to make it clear that his statement that “this person, specifically, has got to have a lot of experience in the music industry,” in reference to his replacement, was not a dig at DeGeneres – whom he praised.
“She’s very responsible for people she has performing on her own show, she loves music and she’s been an artist.”
Cowell said he does miss his buddy Paula Abdul.
“She was somebody I just got very close to over the years,” he said. “We’d hang out after the show and she always made me laugh. She was very funny.”
Cowell told HLN’s “Showbiz Tonight” anchor Brooke Anderson that, so far, no one who has approached him personally about filling his role is a serious contender.
“I’ve got a couple of calls, but they were really quite boring people who never stood a chance,” he said.
This year could see a woman emerge victorious as the “American Idol” said Simon, who added that he wouldn’t mind “finding the next Taylor Swift.”
He also would love to snag a female artist of the moment as a mentor this season.
“I think we should have Lady Gaga because she is the most relevant pop artist in the world right now,” Cowell said. “And I’ve met her, she’s very smart.”
"Showbiz Tonight" will have more on Simon and his revelations on Friday's show, 11 p.m. ET on HLN.
put on stand, Dr.Phil
David Foster–he's the only sensible suggestion so far. He knows the music business, and he knows talent when he hears it. The only variable is will he have an on-air presence large enough to fill Simon's shoes?
Simon says his replacement needs to have had success in the music industry, then goes onto say Perez Hilton is a good choice? I'm not following his logic there.
In response to Stern– (I'm biased because I like Stern) Howard said this morning that he knows when to turn off his inappropriate comments for the right platform, understands it is a family show and would act accordingly.
Stern may not be a music insider who can "spot music stars," but based on the winners that show has produced who actually went on to become successful (besides Clarkson and Underwood) they're about as good at finding talent as Diddy is at "making da band."
David Foster to me is the perfect choice.
Also, while I think Ellen is great on her own TV show, she was the wrong choice for American Idol. She does not have the music background that qualifies her to be a judge. Bring back Paula Abdul or replace with someone who is a credible judge.
God NO on Perez Hilton. he is a total waste of fame. I think Ellen is doing O.K. but still reserving judgement as she hasn't really been on that much. also I think she is the perfect balance (or someone like her) as long as there are at least 2 judges in the music industry. I think Ellen – although way more knowledgeable than most of us viewers – brings an opinion that is a little closer to ours and since we are the ones voting I feel that's great.
MIck Jagger or Eric Clapton
Sterling Koerpel. Maybe she's unknown globally but she has seasoned ears for music, degree, experience. is street-wise. Whatever you do, please please choose someone who "is" the music.
Paul McCartney or Gene Simmons....
Elton John would be perfect!!! He's a Brit, a bitch and knows music! What's not appealing about that?? Plus he's FAB ulous!! I can just imagine all the costumes! I love Ellen, but they should bring Paula back!
I loved Simon and Paula together in AI. I also love Ellen but not in AI...
In a way Simon is the show. People tune in to hear what he is going to say just as much as they do to watch competition and hear the singing. I'm fairly certain the show will be doomed once Simon is gone.
Also, Howard Stern is a quite disgusting person and it would be a huge mistake to use him as a replacement for Simon. Let me guess, he will only have nice things to say about the blondes who he will have sitting on his lap and leaning over to expose there cleavage, etc. etc. All of the blonds with big breasts will make it to Hollywood no matter how bad they sound and all of the guys will be axed. Girls will be asked to take off their tops and he'll feel their breasts before they can give their audition! Sorry Stern, the show is called American Idol not American Sleaze! Why don't you go judge a porno competition for the biggest, fakest onscreen breasts!!
You hire Howard Stern and your going to bring about 16 million viewers to the show(99% of his satellite audience and the 10 million who didn't hop over when he made the change to satellite). For those of you who don't know, when David Letterman was losing in the ratings against Leno, Letterman brought Stern in and ALWAYS took Leno on those days.
For the record, Cowell knows nothing about American music; his only hits were overseas and his influence and knowledge here musically are almost nil.
No one. AI will be over, no one can replace Simon. Show will be canceled within a year. It was good while it lasted but Simon IS AI. No one can step in his shoes. Any smart alec Brit could try, but they don't have Simon's X factor. I hate it, but that's it for the show. The only hope will be if they manage to woo him back with a b-hole load of money. That will be the only thing to save the show. Paula was an idiot and she won't be missed, but Simon. Come on. It's over.
...if they ever approach howie mandell for a shot at it, i think it could bide them time until they make their final choice
While Conan was the first to come to my mind, could see Joan Rivers, possibly Robin Leach (although he is a bit older but has a British accent), and I hear Leno's Kevin Eubanks wants out, or the wannabe Brit Madonna. Isn't Jeff Probst possibly leaving Survivor?
I never watched the show, except for occasional spots and the Susan Boyle discovery, largely because I didn't like the concept of having someone with no particular talent or expertise judge performers. Simon Cowell struck me as an outrageous arrogant man, but his persona obviously worked for him. I think a replacement should be someone with certifiable talent and experience, not a huckster. Why not rotate judges and call upon a well-known performer or director each time? Say, Shirley MacLaine, Chita Rivera, Julie Andrews, Smokey Robinson, and so forth? (I can't think of other names, but there are many from Hollywood and Broadway and TV.)
I heard Conan O'Brien was looking for a job....
piers morgan no... howard stern YES
American idol is terrible right now, they need a spark to get it going. Id get rid of randy ellen and kara, id keep simon and bring in stern. Stern and simon would be awesome together
Do the right thing a.i and hire the man howard stern
Dude! Conan would be perfect. He's funny. Talented. Intelligent....and available.
I don't know if all of the rumours about Gene Simmons are true or not, but he may attempt to become romantically involved with every female contestant. While entertaining, this may not be in anyone's best interest.
What would be the piont for Lady Gaga to be a judge?
She'd steal the show with her outfits?
Plus I'd stop watching.
How about some other producer with a attiude?
american idol is about Simon, Paula tshe contestant
Betty White for the win!
Seriously, Perez? The bottomfeeder who has tagged onto the skirttails of anyone famous just to get his name out there?
I think either Dennis Rodman or Ru Paul is a better choice.
Have always watched the show..............will never turn it on if Howard Stern is on the judging panel. The show needs to focus less on the drama and more on the music and singing. I am losing interest already because there is so much focus on trivial drama. Stick to the singing.
I think Cher would be a cool choice too
I think Jack Black might be a good possibility, although, he is not quite as sophisticated
I think that Andrea Fay Friedman from "The Family Guy" whose having a spat with Palin should get the job.
How about a monkey? Just put a t-shirt on him and you'll have Simon's replacement. After this season the ratings will drop and the show will be canceled within one or two more seasons. The X-Factor will probably take Idol's place.
Anytime a program starts changing personalities or adds Heather Locklear it's doomed. They don't need another judge, they need to change the format instead.
I really like Simon...the show will definitely not be the same. This show has had great success in part largely because of him--you just love to hate him (lol) I cannot erase the image from my mind when he saw Susan Boyle on Britain's Got Talent.....the man knows a great voice–no matter how the book looks on the outside. At least he is honest. and some of those contestants need to be delivered from their delusions of grandeur.
I nominate me. Simon just a watered down version of me anyway.
I'm thinking Robert Plant and Allison Krauss
If I'm any measure to go by, I've not watched a minute of the show this year. When in the past I've made it a point to watch. Perhaps I'll tune in but my interest has really waned.
seems to me gene simmons is looking for a gig and he's obviously getting his friends to recommend him as a judge. the only way to keep idol alive is to fire all the judges and start again.
I am sure that if the rumor is true that Howard Stearn may be on Idol, the show is doomed. He is just TRASH!!
The only Brit who who could replace another Brit is Sharon Osbourne. She has the same personality as Simon, actually has a music backgound and knows how to build talent.
They should pay Paula whatever it takes to get her back......Show is not the same without her!!!
Might be hard to find another person with the job title of "Professional D!ck"
Personally, I don't care, because this show is responsible for unleashing a lot of BAD pop music on America, but a lot of people ripping on Stern as a possibility have never REALLY listened to his show, only hearing clips of him interviewing strippers and the like. Listen to his interviews with actors or musicians, and you'd see he would be a pretty good choice for Idol, definitely a better choice than Ellen Degeneres. Either way, I don't care, because Idol is a bad show anyhow.
I think that Quincy Jones would be a fantastic addition to Idol.
idol is headed down hill after simon leaves, paula needs to be on, out with ellen, she is not good for the show, it will end if stern or peres goes on .
We need a similar personality and level of expertise – Hey I know
how about Donald Trump!!
I liked Tommy Lee on the pick a band member show and the other guy who was the lead on that show. Paul McCartney for the British flavor, although he probably couldn't mean enough
This show is on its way out. When someone gets the" BRIGHT" idea to bring ELLEN on the panel as a judge to decide if a contestant is talanted enough to go on to the next level , time to pull the curtain down. A no talant in this field' judging a person with a possible SINGING FUTURE !!! Why don't you bring in PEE WEE Herman as your next judge .
I can't believe no one has mentioned Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She's got long experience as a judge with the Supremes.
I'm really sick of all these reality shows on TV. I've never liked IDOL, period. And as for Ellen, what does she know about music? She's a talk show host for god's sake. I thought to be a judge on this show you gotta know something about music. I say, it's time for this show to say bye bye.
I think they should completely replace the whole panel
but i don't know if Fox have the big money.
P Diddy Sean Combs
we need some acrimonious, bitterly truthful with ears and eyes for the music as Simon – otherwise the program is goos as dead !
No one. Idol should end if Simon leaves.
I think I've figured out why Simon Cowell is leaving American Idol: He wants to be the next President of the United States in 2012. Just think about it; no more having to elect members of Congress. They can put on their dog and pony act in front of President Simon and his panel of judges, and hope not to get buzzed right out of office.
Paris Hilton – 180 degree away from Simon
I'll take Simon's place. I've been in music most of my life (30+ years) and tend to agree with him most of the time...and I need a job!
I can't believe no one has mentioned the Hoff! Certainly he has to be in contention.
GENE SIMMONS for sure or maybe even Kitchen Nightmare's Gordon Ramsay! Someone who is funny and has a quick wit.
Puff Daddy, Quincy Jones and Kenny Baby Face Edmunds. Those are my choices to a lesser extent Russell Simmons.
David Foster, brilliant. The guy launched Celine Dion and Josh Groban to name two. He has worked with the best and knows not only the art but the business.
...and the Commitee has chosen....Barack Obama, he is a personality and he'll convince you of anything, as long as your music sounds like hoops in the basket.
It is just a show. That is why judge should be the showmen. They can make anyone a star if they want to.
The only names thrown out there that i'd watch are Quincy Jones or Elton John. Altho I like Piers Morgan – he's the most like Simon in temperment – but he isnt in the music business and thats exactly what i dont like about Ellen – i like her as a comedian but i dont like her as a talk show host or a judge of singing – and i cant stand her dancing !
Gene Simmons is an excellent suggestion! I can't see Howard Stern being a good fit for AI. Ted Nugent is talkative, funny and blunt enough to do the job, but I don't know that he could suffer the foolishness of it all. Piers Morgan would do a good job.
What's Brian Dunkleman up to these days?
It's funny to see all these comments on Howard Stern from people who clearly don't listen to him on the radio. He is at least as clever and biting as Simon. He has a sense for the "x-factor". And he knows musical talent when he sees it (though he can't carry a tune to save his life). Even on sirius/xm he probably swears the least of anyone–I don't think he'll have trouble moderating for "middle america".
Let's face it, Randy and Kara do not add any value. I usually FF through their comments. How about replacing them while we're at it? Quincy Jones, Ben Folds, David Foster would each be additive.
who cares, the show sucks anyway
I agree that Gene Simmons would be a good choice, I don't think anyone could top Simon's sharp oral insults as he does'nt have that kind of personality. But he is good judge of talent and has more charisma than Simon.
Jon Bon Jovi... he's the man for the job. He's got the whole package and more. I'd tune in just to watch HIM! :)
How about Stewie?
We needs someone edumakated like Georgie double-ya Bush. That would spice things up.
Two Names: Alice Cooper or Gene Simmons
haha me too rich!
Hopfully someone with an eye for talent will replace him.
Triumph the insult comic dog.
I was a little irked when Ellen was signed on, but never considered no longer watching the show. I can honestly say that Perez Hilton is one of the few people who would force me to abandon American Idol.
American idol has become such a disappointment. The judges know nothing about music, as Elle D reminds us. Why not let the show die a decent death? It's over. Enough of all that groveling for a "chance".
You could ask Willy Nelson to step in ....he would probably turn the job down....never know.
With Paula gone and Simon leaving, it is time to wrap IDOL up and say good-bye. Randy has lost his spark and Kara doesn't have the great presence she had with Paula. Ellen doesn't cut it. Sorry but it is the truth.
I think Gene Simmons should replace Simon... not a big fan of Ellen.
In reading comments, it is amazing that people actually care so much about vapid television. It appears as though Milli, or perhaps, Vanilli would be the perfect fit.
Here's an idea ... why don't they just end the show?
how does perez hilton have more personality and experience than howard stern....howard has a very broad taste in music and has been having musical acts and judging them on his show for years!
I think "FOX" should just follow "NBC" on how to change a "Hit" show into a major nightmare!!, or just have me replace Simon, no conflict of interest, how sweet would that be!.
It does not matter who replaces Simon, a next will be last for American Idol.
How about Elton John?
Olivia Newton-John or Gloria Estefan .
PLEASE, DO NOT bring on Howard Stern. I will never be able to watch the show again. I hope this is nothing but rumor. This guy, uuuuuhhhh,
I cannot even express the disgust I feel just hearing his name.
How about Mike Tyson replacing Simon Cowell..LOL
I think Abe Vigoda would be a good choice.
I wold like to see Brandy replace Simon. When she was a guess judge a couple of years ago, she was MARVELOUS. So I think with her knowledge of music and her personality, she would fit in fine.
I second that for Paul McCartney – he knows music, and he wouldn't strictly be rock (like Gene Simmons). I'm not sure how 'critical' he could be though – he may be too nice! But so far, I vote for Paul.
I think the show is done
I HATE to see Simon go. He is one of a kind. I really wish he would stay and I am concerned that the show may loose some of its appeal. He is such a personality and will be missed.
I wondered in the beginning how Ellen would fit into "scene" on Idol, I have always liked her. Now that I have seen her on the show, I think she is wonderful and a great choice. I was so happy for that.
I LOVE THE HOLE CAST OF CHARTERS that are currently there and wish it to stay the way that it is.
David Foster or Piers Morgan
Perez Hilton?? Ugh. I would honestly stop watching if he were a judge.
Stern has been in radio for how many years? And yet Simon still says he lacks the musical knowledge and background?!
Oh come on, Howard Stern. He is a disgusting piece of human flesh. As for Ellen Degeneres she is a hostess of a talk show, she has no musical talent, no experience in the music business.
American Idol has gone downhill like a sled full of iron shoes.
I think Stern would be better than most imagine he would be...as long as he could remain "G" rated (that's the worry.) Gene Simmons would work too....but someone said Paul McCartney...NOOO! He wouldn't do it and if he did...yuck...NOT my fav Beatle. It just might be the best replacement is an unknown, behind-the-scenes music exec (who knew Simon before AI?)
Here is my short list of judges: Dog the Bounty Hunter, Charlie Sheen, Tony Danza, Joe Jackson. Sad that Simon is leaving. Although, I like Ellen, the jokes are a little dry. But she looked extra butchy Wedsnesday....YUMMY!!!!!!!!!
I think we need a really strong judge....I think Judge Judy would be perfect – she's the ultimate judge and she doesn't take people's crap.
Replace Simon with Suzi Quatro and as a mentor this year.
I hope the people of 'Idol' consider Jamie Fox, of all the talented guest artists his input was most ginuine. The contestants if they took his feedback were most to improve. I think he knows what he is talking about and would make a belivable judge. You need a judge with knowledge.
I think they would do well by going with me. I am even more discerning than Simon, and I am certainly more entertaining than any of the judges, save Ellen.
What about Richard Branson? Music Executive, media savvy and a Brit?
I think David Foster would be a great replacement for Simon.
the only replacement, if was still alive, would be Frank Zappa
Howard Stern on anything on Radio or TV = Me not watching EVER!
Nine seasons is long enough – plug it off the same way as many other shows like Seinfeld, Friends and so on... That will be the best for both sides – creators and spectators. Amin!
Ellen has been a real letdown. It is really a bad choice to make a funny person seem serious. Ever time she is on camera, it is hard to watch. This just doesn't mix well for Ellen's fans or for the fans of American Idol. What was Fox thinking? This is as big a mistake as when NBC got rid of conan. TV execs should get a clue and stop ruining shows.
I would like David Foster to replace Simon. He probably is too busy but he does know the music biz.
I'm thinking... David Foster!
Paul McCartney is a fantastic artist but the guy could never be honest, you need someone who is not afraid of being hated because of their opinion. There's no one better at that than Howard Stern. People have to realize he talks for 5-6 hours a day, maybe 20 minutes of his show would be considered indecent if it were on television. The rest of the time he's just a normal guy.......who likes American Idol......and chess......okay, maybe not normal but a great fit none the less.
IF WE ARE LUCKY IT WILL BE THE END OF THIS STUPID TV SHOW.
I have stopped watching since they put Ellen on.
With the listening public getting younger and younger each season, they need to find someone who gets the new generation of listeners and watchers. I personally do not like the choice of Ellen so I can imagine the next choice won't thrill me either!
I think David Foster would be perfect – and even better than Simon! I saw him on the David Foster & Friends PBS special and he mentioned that in recent years he has enjoyed fostering new talent (no pun intended)!
Stephen Hawking or John McCain would be great!
Quincy Jones would be respectable.
thats what the show has to retain. a respectable opinion.
how about Me?!
LOVE the idea of Quincy Jones.
OMG Perez Hilton!!! Surely Simon was kidding...this guy is such a joke and obnoxious on top of that! I don't care one bit that he's gay...that has nothing to do w/his personality...it is awful!!!!!
I think Paul McCartney would be great. Talk about a successful musician and how his music changed with the times. I think he would be great. Plus, having another Brit on the show would keep up that sense of sophistication I always feel when listening to their accents.
Simon and Paula made the show. We or at least I know I will follow him to the X show. Get rid of Ellen.
and.. Isn't Simon going to promote an American verision of another European music talent show? The crowd will flock to the new show – we all so fickle.
Good choice for Simmons. Now there's a musically talented person. Or maybe someone from the country set. Gene is definately rock, It would be an interesting to have mixed genre judges. Most times what a judge likes is as much about taste as talent. Of course what do we know about what Gene listens to when no one is looking...
I think people are missing the fact that the Howard Stern you get on SiriusXM and formerly over the airwaves is mostly an act. The Howard Stern you'd get on American Idol would not be the same Howard Stern you get on the radio.
Most folks who have met Howard report that he's in fact a seriously nice guy. He's thoughtful and intelligent. Having been a DJ for the majority of his life, he's been around Music more than most and definitely has solid opinions on what is good and what sells. I think he'd make an excellent judge for the show.
Only problems I see is that SiriusXM would lose him and that would suck. Not to mention his presence would still not be enough for me to watch American Idol.
Paula can replace Simon and Sharon Osborne can replace Ellen. I love Ellen but she is awful on the show.
It's gotta be Gary. Gary Coleman. Give him a phone book and a wardrobe allowance and he's good to go. He can make a career and we can save one.
I agree with those who think Gene Simmons would be a good fit.
Our family consensus – Gene Simons. Very knowledgable about the music industry. Has launched many peoples careers. And could be entertaining as a judge
Gene Simmons would be an excellent choice! I will never stop watching; it may change a little every year but the talent and personalities of the contestants is always different, never boring. I absolutely love the show and would love to see Gene Simmons replace Simon!
Let America choose the next judge. Three contestants, three shows. America...you decide. Oh, and get rid of Ellen while you're at it. Bring back Twain.
I believe that when Simon leaves, the show will follow within 2 seasons
If Piers Morgan takes Simon place, that will be the end of me watching the show. Or Howard Stern. Simon's annoying and sometimes he's a jerk, but he's go nothing on those two. Ratings would plummet.
I really think it should be someone with a strong background in music, either a singer,a producer or a record company executive. Quincy Jones, Mutt Lange, Clive Davis are all names that leap to mind. I know it will be a man because there are already two women, so Shania Twain won't be considered. She was great as a guest judge, though.
I think the show has run its course. Time to call it a day and just end.
Gene Simmons. He knows the music business, has auditioned talent before, is funny, out spoken and charming.
Who cares. Ever since Ellen got on I am no longer interested. Her musical background is in what" My dog could be a better judge.
Get Adam Lambert!
Stern's business is the shock business. He has mastered both plugged and unplugged radio. I think he would be a good guest at first. If America likes him...there you go.
I think Stern would be the perfect match – he is loved or hated it would create excellent entertainment and water cooler talk. He has more musical experience then most of the Judges – he has been in radio and intorduced many bands and can spot musical talent. I think Simon is the best and no one could fill his shoes – but I think Stern would be the best fit.
I think the Cookie Monster should do fine, and probably would do a much better job than Simon. Simon says ,, never liked that game.
It will be the end of Idol – I'm looking forward to X Factor
coming to America. It's a great show and will be even better
I think that the show is doomed no matter who they get to replace him. The show was only successful because of Simon and his British wit. The format this year has been pretty dull so far. If they actually did get Perez Hilton that would definitely be the end as far as I'm concerned.
Gene Simmons, Ozzy or Cyndi Lauper.
It will be very difficult to replace Simon. In my opinion he is the face of American Idol. The show will not be the same without him. I do not think Howard Stern would be a good fit for Idol. Stern is too perverse and crude for prime time tv. I read somewhere that Simon may have approached Paula Abdul as a judge for his new show the X factor. I hope this is true because they make such a good pair.
He can't be replaced. I am glad he got off when he did, at least he will not have to sit with that skank.
Piers Morgan is the only plausible replacement in my mind.
I really think someone like LA Reid or Babyface would be awesome. Great knowledge of music and have discovered their share of amazing artists.
Whoever they get, They will need to have a lot of character similar to Simon. Stern might be interesting, but I don't think america is ready for him on primetime TV.
You must be logged in to post a comment.
Our daily cheat-sheet for breaking celebrity news, Hollywood buzz and your pop-culture obsessions.
Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.
Join 7,766 other followers