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New ‘AGT’ Judge Gabrielle Union Reveals How The Show Has Already Changed Her

Jill O'Rourke

Jill O'Rourke

Gabrielle Union

Season 14 of America’s Got Talent recently began production, and Gabrielle Union is opening up about her experience as a new judge. As she told Extra, the show has already changed her in a pretty emotional way.


“I’m having so much fun, but I also cry about every third act,” she said on a red carpet promoting the show. “I’m not really a crier, but this show has turned me into a blubbering mess. Like every episode is like watching Beaches, basically.”

One of the acts that made Gabrielle (and the rest of the judges) cry is actually her Golden Buzzer act for the season. Fellow judge Howie Mandel recently teased it as “the most epic moment” in AGT history.

Trae Patton / NBC

What To Expect From Gabrielle’s Judging

Gabrielle said it’s “very hard” for her to say no to contestants, and she doesn’t do it often. She called herself the “sucker judge,” explaining, “I get told no often. As an actor, we get told no quite a bit. So being a part of telling someone yes, your dreams are a little closer to coming true — I mean, come on, it’s amazing.”


The actress is joining dancer Julianne Hough to replace departing judges Mel B and Heidi Klum. Gabrielle jokingly blamed herself for Mel’s departure, calling herself a “psycho Spice Girls fan” who wished for a reunion tour. She added that Mel and Heidi have “huge shoes to fill,” but she’s not trying to replace them: “I’m gonna try to walk in my own stilettos.”

How Gabrielle Is Juggling TV And Motherhood

Gabrielle recently gave birth to a baby daughter named Kaavia, with her husband Dwyane Wade. She’s a busy woman, as she’s also starring in a new TV show called L.A.’s Finest with Jessica Alba.

“And my baby starts solid foods tomorrow!” she announced. “You can multitask. Some things are not gonna be amazing, but you just roll with it.”


Kaavia is definitely keeping Gabrielle on her toes, as she recently told Parents magazine that there was a period when the baby wouldn’t nap, and she couldn’t figure out when to “shower or pee or live.”

How Has Simon Cowell Been Treating Her?

Perhaps the most important question to ask a new AGT judge is how they’re getting on with Simon. Gabrielle told Extra that they “get along very well,” explaining, “I think he appreciates straight shooters.”

She also went over to Simon’s house for dinner, and he had her favorite tequila there. As she says, “The rest is gravy.”

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About the Author

Jill O'Rourke
Jill O’Rourke is a contributor at Talent Recap, writing news stories and recaps for shows like ‘AGT,’ ‘The Voice,’ and ‘American Idol.’ She graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in English and Film Studies, and has been writing about pop culture since 2012, with previous bylines at Crushable and A Plus. Jill spends her free time binge-watching sitcoms and daydreaming about life as a hobbit

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