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The move follows Gabrielle Union's dismissal from her position as judge on the competition series after making a comment about the show's 'toxic culture.'
In the wake of Gabrielle Union's exit as a judge on America's Got Talent, in which she cited a "toxic culture," Simon Cowell has reportedly beefed up his legal team.
The report of the increased legal team occurred Saturday.
The Hollywood Reporter was not immediately able to contact Cowell's legal reps for more information on this specific situation.
Union was dismissed from her position as judge after one season on the competition series when she made a comment about the show's "toxic culture." In her complaint she had reportedly asked for offensive jokes from show guest Jay Leno to be reported to the Human Resources department, but this request had not been fulfilled by those in higher positions of power.
Following her exit, SAG-AFTRA launched an investigation into her departure from the NBC competition series. Woman's advocacy group Time's Up has put their support behind the actress, in addition to a number of Hollywood actresses including Patricia Arquette and Ellen Pompeo.
During the backlash over her departure, Union met with NBC to discuss the incident. She tweeted on Wednesday, "I was able to, again, express my unfiltered truth. I led with transparency and my desire and hope for real change."
Source: Hollywood Reporter
Terry Crews has apologized to Gabrielle Union for remarks that seemed to “invalidate” her experience with America’s Got Talent by defending the show against charges of racism and sexism.
Crews appeared last week on the Today show and said Union’s complaints about America’s Got Talent’s behind-the-scenes operations were never his experience. Crews hosts America’s Got Talent and its winter edition, America’s Got Talent: The Champions.
Now, he’s re-thought his position and issued a public apology.
“I told @KevinHart4real a while ago, he needed 2 “acknowledge the pain of other people.” Right now I have to do the same thing. I want to apologize for the comments I made. I realize there are a lot of Black women hurt and let down by what I said and also by what I didn't say,” Crews said Friday.
“I hear you, I respect you and understand you. I am sorry and I am here to support you. I spoke from my own personal point of view without first taking into consideration someone else's experience. I allowed disrespectful comments directed at me and my family to cause me to react angrily instead of responding thoughtfully. This certainly caused more harm, and it is my hope that I can amend any pain I have caused to those who were hurt by my words.”Photo by Broadimage/Shutterstock
He also addressed Union directly.
“@itsgabrielleu, I want you to know it was never my intention to invalidate your experience— but that is what I did. I apologize. You have been through a lot in this business, and with that I empathize with the struggle toward fairness and equality in the workplace,” he wrote.
The comments Crews apologized for came when he was asked about Union’s prior complaints. Her contract with the show was not renewed in November for Season 15, causing her to accuse the show and network of undermining her on several counts.
“First of all, I can't speak for sexism because I'm not a woman,” he said on Today. “But I can speak on behalf of any racism comments. That was never my experience. In fact, it was the most diverse place I have ever been in my 20 years of entertainment.”
In December, she met with NBC and the AGT production companies on those allegations. The five-hour meeting was described as “productive” by Union, and the other parties vowed to “take whatever next steps may be appropriate.” The investigation is supposed to wrap by today.
@itsgabrielleu, I want you to know it was never my intention to invalidate your experience— but...
NBC’s America’s Got Talent has filled its two vacant judge chairs. Modern Family star Sofia Vergara is joining the hit summer reality series as a new judge for its upcoming 15th season. Additionally, Heidi Klum, who was a judge on AGT for six seasons, from 2013-2018, is coming back. They are being joined by returning judges Simon Cowell, who is AGT’s creator and executive producer, and Howie Mandel, as well as host Terry Crews.
“I'm so happy to join my new family on AGT,” said Vergara, who will be making AGT history. “This is a new and exciting next chapter for me and I'm extremely proud to be the first Latin judge on the show. I can't wait to watch all the talent and have fun with all you guys!”
Vergara and Klum succeed Gabrielle Union and Julianne Hough who were let go in November after one season on AGT. Union’s ouster sparked controversy and triggered an investigation over allegations of hostile work environment on the reality show. The investigation was supposed to wrap by end of January but its results are yet to be made public.
Klum never left the AGT franchise - she has been a judge on spinoff America’s Got Talent: The Champions.
“I'm so excited to be back at AGT with Simon, Howie and Terry. The fact that Sofia Vergara is joining us is the icing on an already delicious cake,” Klum said.
Vergara is coming off an 11-season run as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett on ABC's hit comedy Modern Family, a role that has earned her four Emmy nominations.
“Sofia's infectious energy and sharp wit will blend perfectly with returning favorites Heidi, Simon, Howie, and Terry. As both a respected actress and successful entrepreneur, she embodies the American dream that is synonymous with AGT's transformative stage,” said Meredith Ahr, President, Alternative & Reality Group, NBC Entertainment.
Last summer, America's Got Talent averaged a 2.1 rating in adults 18-49 and 11.9 million viewers overall in Live+7 Nielsens. The 14th cycle of AGT once again easily ranked as the summer's #1 most-watched entertainment series, towering by 4.4 million viewers over the next most-watched entertainment program.
AGT is also a digital/social phenomenon, amassing 3.2 billion views across all digital video platforms in 2019. AGT was the #1 most-social broadcast series of 2019 42.8 million total interactions to date in linear metrics, Source: Nielsen Social SCR.
Editors' Note: The television business is in a state of flux as the global Coronavirus pandemic continues to claim thousands of lives and hit the economy. This is one of several stories that will look at how the non-scripted industry is coping with the crisis.
ABC's American Idol is supposed to start airing live performance shows in just a couple of days. But last week, prep work, including rehearsals with the finalists, was suspended, and the contestants were sent home to be with their families amid escalating coronavirus pandemic.
Imagine a world where talent show contestants have to perform in front of their mirrors rather than live audiences or where a Bachelorette can only speak to potential suitors via teleconferencing — these are some of the potential fallouts of the COVID-19 crisis on non-scripted television.
In much the same way as their scripted siblings, non-scripted buyers and producers are fighting to adapt to a new normal to ensure that holes in the schedule are kept to a minimum and that the reality show can go on.
Almost all of the big tentpole formats, from American Idol to Survivor and America's Got Talent to The Bachelorette have been hit by the production shutdown as has Fox's Masterchef, which was forced to shut down in the middle of its season 11 shoot.
The reality pipeline is, however, not running completely dry. Shows such as NBC's World of Dance and Songland, Fox's Hell's Kitchen and Ultimate Tag and ABC's The Bachelor: Listen To Your Heart are shot and in the can and ready to be slotted into schedules, while there's the potential for major formats such as Big Brother and Love Island to get up and running once the worst of the crisis dissipates.
ITV America, which had to shut down filming on shows such as Netflix's Queer Eye, is confident that CBS' version of British dating reality hit Love Island will still go ahead this summer. CEO David George said that the show, which was moved up from July to May this year, can be turned around in less than 48 hours. “Once the switch is turned on, we can get it to air very quickly. As of right now, we're not particularly worried, because it's quick turn, it makes sense. We're trying to get it as ready as possible so when [CBS] says 'go', we're ready, location-wise, build outs, casting
Meanwhile, while Fox has had to suspend work on shows such as So You Think You Can Dance right, its forthcoming Korean mystery music gameshow I Can Be Your Voice and the second season of Rob Lowe-fronted Mental Samurai, it can take solace in the fact that it has seen ratings bumps for the likes of The Masked Singer and Lego Masters, while it also has episodes of Beat Shazam and its new competition format Ultimate Tag completed....