How Simon Cowell’s Son Affects His Approach To Judging ‘America’s Got Talent’

Jill O'Rourke
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Simon Cowell son EricNBC

We may have Simon Cowell’s son Eric to thank for his gentler approach to judging on America’s Got Talent. In a new interview, the music mogul shares how being a father to a 4-year-old affects how he looks at the show — particularly its youngest contestants.


We all remember Cowell’s “Mr. Nasty” days on American Idol, but for the past several years he’s been showing a softer side to himself. He helped X Factor contestant Scarlett Lee after her home burned down, and has even shed a few tears on air during particularly touching performances.

Is it all thanks to him becoming a father? Cowell told People,

“Now Eric is older, he’s nearly 5. I can see the show through his eyes. It’s very interesting sometimes I can notice with the show when he switches on and off, so that’s a huge help. Because I have Eric now, I look at the younger contestants in a very different light, thinking, ‘Oh God what if that was him?’”

We saw this kid-friendly approach just last night on America’s Got Talent: The Champions, when Cowell told 6-year-old South Africa’s Got Talent winner DJ Arch Jr that he has “plans” for him, calling him a “little star.”


Cowell has even taken Eric’s influence directly to the judge’s chair by bringing him on the set of both Britain’s Got Talent and America’s Got Talent. Last season, he showed off some classic dad behavior by telling 5-year-old contestant Sophie Fatu that Eric had a crush on her.

Although he has already mentioned that he hopes Eric will take over his record label Syco one day, Cowell humored inquiring minds by sharing what talent the two of them might show off in a father-son act. “We’d either do a swinging balancing trick or try out and train our dogs who are the worst behaved dogs in the world,” he told People. “Probably the latter and it would be a disaster but I would be happy to do that.”


Did we read that right? Simon Cowell would be “happy” to take part in a disastrous dog act? Eric, you’ve done good.

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