June 7th, 2010
03:36 PM ET
Who knew Simon Cowell was really just a big old softie at heart?
On June 6, "American Idol’s" most cantankerous critic was surprisingly humble as he was honored in his native England for his contribution to British broadcasting.
Looking striking in a black suit instead of his signature tight T-shirts, the 50-year-old Cowell, who created the U.K. hits "The X-Factor" and "Britain’s Got Talent," accepted his award without dropping a single “dreary” or “dreadful” into his emotional speech.
“One of my happiest memories as a kid was when my dad came home with a color TV set. I was about five years old and me and my friends came back from school and watched the one program that was in color,” he told the London crowd. “So standing here getting an award for making television shows is the happiest feeling of my life.”
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