Have you been watching the “America’s Got Talent” audition episodes and wondering what the rest of season 15 will look like? Then you’ve come to the right spot. We’ve got all the details of how the producers of “AGT” intend to handle both the episodes dedicated to judges cuts and the live shows.
Shortly before the auditions began in February, NBC announced that there would be a shake-up to the judging panel. While head judge and executive producer Simon Cowell and long-time panellist Howie Mandel were returning the two women recruited for season 14 — “Dancing with the Stars” alumna Julianne Hough and actress Gabrielle Union — would not be back. Instead, Heidi Klum, who’d exited the show after six seasons, would rejoin as a judge. And new to the show was “Modern Family” scene stealer Sofia Vergara.
This new quartet was having great fun with the auditions until Heidi got sick on March 10. Fearing that it was COVID-19, “AGT” producers sent her home. They continued taping with Vergara’s pal from “Modern Family,” pinch-hitting for Heidi. Despite holding auditions without a studio audience, the decision was soon made to shutter production. Acts were asked to submit auditions online and the judges made their final selections virtually. These audition episodes continue until July 14, with a recap airing on July 21
Luckily, Heidi did not test positive for the coronavirus and she was ready to report back to work by the end of March. But the COVID-19 pandemic delayed production until late June. At that point, the decision was made to start filming again, practicing social distancing. As you can see from Sofia’s Instagram post below, the judges are sitting in their cars while watching various acts perform in a parking lot.
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These judges cuts episodes will begin on July 28; that is two weeks later than normal. This delay means the live shows won’t begin until late August. Simon says that there are three ways in which these could take place: either in a studio with or without a live audience or, alternatively, completely online (similar to how “American Idol” did live shows this spring).