Gabrielle Union and Julianne Hough won’t be returning as judges the 15th season of “America’s Got Talent” according to emerging reports. The two judges, who replaced judges Mel B and Heidi Klum, have reportedly not received contracts for the next season. Judges Simon Cowell and Howie Mandel, plus host Terry Crews, are expected to return next season.
While it hasn’t been confirmed, their departure doesn’t seem like their decision. According to reports, Union was denied a contract renewal returning after speaking out against racism and sexism witnessed during her time on the reality talent competition. The evidence points very strongly towards Julianne Hough being fired as well.
Rumors are swirling that Simon Cowell was behind the axe job. Cowell didn’t exactly deny these claims in his comments on the matter and appeared to be okay with plans for switching out the panel. He said, “It wasn’t like it wasn’t working. Everyone who’s been on the show over the years, judge or host, has done a brilliant job. It’s just one of those shows where I think occasionally they just like to rotate the panel.”
“America’s Got Talent” has undergone a number of changes in its 14-season run. Crews replaced former host Tyra Banks last season, who in turn replaced Nick Cannon in 2017. Piers Morgan and Howard Stern were previous judges on the show.