America’s Got Talent’s host Nick Cannon and judges Heidi Klum, Mel B., Howard Stern, and Howie Mandel appeared at NBC’s Summer Press Day to talk about new aspects of the show and what the new judges bring .
The panel opened up with a sneak peek at America’s Got Talent season 8, and we were shown a lot of action-packed moments. In the reel, incoming judges Mel Brown (referred to as Mel B.) and Heidi Klum seemed passionate and excited to be a part of the team. Stern and Mandel, returning for their second and fourth seasons respectively, looked up to their usual antics. On a whole, the group had great chemistry and we were pleasantly surprised by the performances of Brown and Klum.
Since it’s his second year in the gig, Hypable asked Stern if there’s anything he’s doing different this time around. “I’m not bringing anything that’s different,” he quickly shot back. “I’m bringing the same thing as last year. I’m being an honest judge. You saw how great I was last season and now I’m going to do it again. I’m going to take these six and seven year olds and make them cry.”
“I’m bringing humility,” quipped Mandel in response to Stern’s ego – a characteristic that was present throughout the half hour presentation.
Mandel took our question about what Brown and Klum bring more seriously than Stern did. “I think they bring so much more – this show has now gone to a new level in so many ways. In our panel you bring people from different backgrounds. Obviously Mel B. being one of the biggest pop stars of our time. She has that background in marketing and music, and she things differently than I would or Howard would. And Heidi has been marketing fashion and entertainment and has an international view.”
Producers on the panel played down any changes that viewers would notice, but Mandel was able to come up with some bigger ones. First is the fact that the live shows will be at New York City’s Radio City Music Hall. “For the first time in any of these talent driven contests we’re actually sending talent to the iconic mecca of entertainment,” he said proudly.
And there’s one other big change that’s glaringly obvious: “Four judges!” he yelled, referring to the fact that voting is now handled differently because four people are on the panel. “If there are two and two – two people like the performance and two people don’t like it, that’s a no. You have to have three ‘yes’ votes to get through.”
“They’ve also given me complete veto power over the rest of the judges,” joked Stern. “And I’m going to be topless. Everyone’s thrilled about that.” added Stern.