The judges’ table for “America’s Got Talent” Season 14 is about to get a facelift. Per Variety, NBC has announced that Gabrielle Union and Julianne Hough are joining the panel, taking over for long-time judges Heidi Klum and Mel B. Host Tyra Banks is also being replaced by Terry Crews, who currently oversees spinoff series “America’s Got Talent: The Champions.” For fans who don’t like change, there is some good news as the two bookend male judges — Simon Cowell and Howie Mandel — will return for Season 14.
This marks one of the biggest cast shakeups in the reality TV show’s history, since Season 8 when Klum and Mel B were both hired to replace a single judge, Sharon Osbourne. Mandel has bragging rights as the longest-serving “AGT” personality after originally joining the judges’ table back in Season 5, and Cowell became a panelist in Season 11 after creating and producing the worldwide franchise.
While Crews’ addition to the flagship series wasn’t really a surprise since he’s the host of “AGT: Champions,” Union and Hough are new to the “Got Talent” family. Union is a BET Award-nominated actress who’s perhaps best recognized for her roles in “Bring It On” and the “Bad Boys” universe. Hough is a former “Dancing With the Stars” pro dancer and judge who’s also acted in productions like “Grease Live” and “Rock of Ages”
Even though Klum and Mel B have left “America’s Got Talent,” there is still one last chance to see them behind the judges’ desk in the February 18 season finale of “AGT: Champions.” However, the spinoff series was filmed last year before they made their decisions to leave, so it’s unlikely the two judges will get the epic sendoff they deserve.
Over the years Klum anointed such memorable Golden Buzzer acts as teenage singers Makayla Phillips and Angelina Green and crooner Sal Valentinetti, while some of Mel B’s picks were teenage singer Amanda Mena, gospel singer Sharon Irving and singing ventriloquist Darci Lynne Farmer (who won). Will you miss Klum and Mel B on “Americas Got Talent”? Let us know by sounding off down in the comments section.