Simon Cowell is returning to the States after a two-year break from TV screens, announcing that he will be a judge on the next season of ‘America’s Got Talent’.

Though the brutally honest judge has made his millions setting up the likes of ‘The X Factor’, ‘American Idol’ and ‘Britain’s Got Talent’, and indeed co-created the popular NBC show itself in 2006, the forthcoming eleventh season will be the first time that Cowell has sat on the judging panel of ‘AGT’.

Simon CowellSimon Cowell will be joining 'America's Got Talent' as a judge next year

Speaking on the ‘Today’ show on Thursday (October 22nd), he said “it was the network's decision” to include him, though he admitted to doing some casual lobbying of his own. “I kept sort of popping my head up, saying: 'You know, if you are looking for a very good-looking British judge who could sort of fit on this show, I know someone!'”

Cowell described the British edition of the show as “probably the most fun job” he’s ever had in his life, and said that the American equivalent was just as impressive. “I think the ‘America's Got Talent’ show honestly is one of the best talent shows in the world. I mean, I watch it back and it's like, 'Woah, this is a really good show.'”

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The 56 year old will be replacing the departing Howard Stern on the judging panel, alongside Howie Mandel, Heidi Klum and Mel B. Stern signed off from the show when it concluded in September, having been a judge since 2012. After nearly ten years, it still averages 12.5 million viewers, making it the most popular summer alternative series.

“I am really thrilled to be joining ‘America’s Got Talent’ next season,” said Cowell in a formal statement later that day. “What I love about this show is that it’s open to absolutely anyone. America has some fantastic talent just waiting to be discovered, and I would like that talent to come to our show, including any dogs who can sing!”

Auditions for the upcoming eleventh season are currently underway, and will be continuing in 13 American cities until December 8th.

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