Mel america got talent

‘America’s Got Talent’: Why Mel B and Heidi Klum Are Being Replaced on the Show

America’s Got Talent: The Champions | Trae Patton/NBC

America’s Got Talent is going to look different when it returns for Season 14. Gabrielle Union and Julianne Hough will be two new judges and Terry Crews will act as host. So why are Mel B and Heidi Klum getting replaced? Here is everything you need to know.

Gabrielle Union and Julianne Hough are replacing Heidi Klum and Mel B to reinvent

Julianne Hough | Charley Gallay/Getty Images

It has been announced that actress Gabrielle Union and professional dancer Julianne Hough will be two new judges on the upcoming season of America’s Got Talent. This means that Heidi Klum and Mel B are officially done.

“One of the many secrets to the success and longevity of America’s Got Talent is its fearless drive to reinvent itself,” explained Meredith Ahr, President of Alternative and Reality Group at NBC Entertainment according to Deadline. “The next evolution of the format brings in fresh expert eyes to join Simon and Howie on the panel.”

| Gabrielle Union via Instagram

So why were Union and Hough chosen to step in? “Gabrielle and Julianne are two of the most aspirational women in the business, on top of being electric entertainers with talent across disciplines,” said Ahr. “As their partner in crime, host Terry Crews will continue to light up the stage with his quick wit and unending charm.”

Hough has some judging experience from being one on Dancing with the Stars. Union has been starring on the show, Being Mary Jane.

It was previously reported that talks of replacements started with Mel B

Mel B. on America’s Got Talent | NBC

This news might not totally be surprising given there were reports of the judges table changing for next season. “The word on the street is they are replacing all AGT judges except Simon ,” a source told Page Six. “It started with Mel B and now it’s everyone. Tyra is gone.”

The source also said “Simon’s ready for new judges.” Cowell’s position on the show was safe given he just renewed a multi-year deal with NBC. Banks left her hosting position to pursue other opportunities.

“Tyra’s been inundated with producing and acting requests… she wants to produce and create TV. She will not be returning to AGT in the new year,” a source previously told Page Six. Terry Crews recently hosted America’s Got Talent: The Champions so it makes sense that he has been announced as the replacement for the host.

America’s Got Talent also reportedly has been preparing to go up against The World’s Best

The World’s Best | CBS

America’s Got Talent’s changes are also because it won’t be the only talent show on television anymore. The World’s Best just premiered and an executive on the show claimed the NBC show already started fighting back.

“It’s a competitive industry and no one is more competitive than NBC. That’s why they have America’s Got Talent: The Champions on. That was a direct shot at us,” Mike Darnell said according to Deadline.

“That’s okay; we’re ready for the challenge,” he continued. “We’ve got the next new spin on the variety show.”

So the replacements are probably to refresh America’s Got Talent, especially since it has new competition on television. We will have to wait and see how the change will affect the show next season.

Read more: How ‘The World’s Best’ Is Different from ‘America’s Got Talent’

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Mel B
Age 44
Sex Female
Occupation Recording Artist, Songwriter, Actress, Television Presenter, Author, Dancer, Model
Seasons 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, Champions 1

Mel B, born Melanie Janine Brown, is a judge from Season 8, Season 9, Season 10, Season 11, Season 12, and Season 13 of America’s Got Talent. She was also a judge for America’s Got Talent: The Champions Season 1.


Melanie Brown, best known to audiences as the iconic Mel B of the Spice Girls, is a chart-topping music artist, actress, author, television personality and groundbreaking entrepreneur. Brown has found a home on television across the globe – just last fall she made television history when she joined “The X Factor” in the U.K. as a judge sitting next to Simon Cowell, Cheryl Cole and Louis Walsh. It’s her third number-one show on three different continents, along with a stint as coach on Australian spinoff “The Voice Kids.”

The versatile talent competed on Season 5 of the ABC hit series “Dancing with the Stars,” where she came in second place with her partner, Maksim Chmerkovskiy. She’s appeared on episodes of “Hollywood Game Night,” “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” “Celebrity Name Game” and “Whose Line Is It Anyway?,” sharing her winnings with charity. In theater, she headlined as Mimi in a major production of “Rent” and appeared in a presentation of “The Vagina Monologues.” She frequently co-hosts national television talk shows, including “Today,” “Live with Kelly and Michael” and, most recently, “The View.” Last December Mel B voiced the character of Fury in the new Disney animated feature “Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast.”

Mel B’s brash persona was at the core of the Spice Girl’s global success, racking worldwide record sales of $55 million, a Guinness Book of World Records status for most No. 1 entries on the U.K. charts and most consecutive number ones for a new act. The group’s enduring popularity brought about one of the most successful concert tours of 2007-08 with the reunion trek grossing more than $70 million. In 2012, the Spice Girls reunited in London for a performance at the 2012 Summer Olympics closing ceremony and for the premiere of “Viva Forever,” the musical based on the songs of the Spice Girls.

Mel B currently resides in Los Angeles with her husband and daughters.

Judge Personality

She is probably the second toughest judge on the show. Although she has pushed her buzzer only three times, in the live shows, she will provide constructive criticism when needed. Although as of season 13, she has gotten much tougher than she used to be.

Other Appearances

Season 8Season 9Season 10Season 11Season 12Season 13


  • First act to vote Yes to: David Weathers
  • First act to vote “No” to: Miu
  • First act to buzz: Miu
  • Golden Buzzer Acts: Sharon Irving (10), Laura Bretan (11), Darci Lynne Farmer (12), Amanda Mena (13), Susan Boyle (Champions)
  • Mel’s Golden Buzzer in Season 12, Darci Lynne Farmer, won her season.
  • Every one of Mel B’s Golden Buzzers are either singers or incorporated singing into their acts.
  • Mel had the first televised Golden Buzzer on three separate years, Season 11, Season 12 and The Champions season 1.
  • YouTube Channel
  • Twitter

v • d • e America’s Got Talent
Seasons Season 1 • Season 2 • Season 3 • Season 4 • Season 5 • Season 6 • Season 7 • Season 8 • Season 9 • Season 10 • Season 11 • Season 12 • Season 13 • Champions 1 • Season 14 • Champions 2 • Season 15
Runner Ups
Current Howie Mandel (5-present) • Simon Cowell (11-present) • Heidi Klum (8-Champions 1, Champions 2) • Alesha Dixon (Champions 2)
Former Brandy Norwood (1) • Piers Morgan (1-6) • David Hasselhoff (1-4) • Sharon Osbourne (2-7) • Howard Stern (7-10) • Mel B (8-Champions 1) • Gabrielle Union (14) • Julianne Hough (14)
Hosts Regis Philbin (1) • Jerry Springer (2-3) • Nick Cannon (4-11) • Tyra Banks (12-13) • Terry Crews (Champions 1-present)
Guest Judges

MEL B and Tyra Banks have been axed from America’s Got Talent after five years.

The two women joined the US talent show in 2013 but they will not return for the upcoming 14th season, according to Variety.

6 Mel B and Heidi Klum have been axed from America’s Got TalentCredit: Getty – Contributor

Instead, they will be replaced by former Dancing With The Stars professional Julianne Hough, 30, and actress Gabrielle Union, 46.

Head judge Simon Cowell, 59, and Howie Mandel will remain on the panel, while host Tyra Banks has also departed the series and will be replaced by Brooklyn Nine-Nine star Terry Crews.

Former supermodel Tyra, 45, took over hosting duties from previous presenter Nick Cannon two years ago.

Meredith Ahr, president of the alternative and reality group at NBC Entertainment, said: “One of the many secrets to the success and longevity of America’s Got Talent is its fearless drive to reinvent itself.

6 The Spice Girl has been a judge on the show for five yearsCredit: Getty – Contributor 6 Supermodel Heidi has been on the show for the same length of timeCredit: Getty – Contributor 6 Former Dancing With The Stars professional Julianne Hough is one of the new judgesCredit: The Mega Agency 6 Actress Gabrielle Union has also joined the panelCredit: Getty – Contributor

“The next evolution of the format brings in fresh expert eyes to join Simon and Howie on the panel.

“Gabrielle and Julianne are two of the most aspirational women in the business, on top of being electric entertainers with talent across disciplines.

“I am excited to see how their knowledge, compassion and sheer joy enhance the experience for acts and viewers alike.

“As their partner in crime, host Terry Crews will continue to light up the stage with his quick wit and unending charm.”

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Fern Britton & Phil Vickery ‘weren’t on speaking terms’ before split 6 Tyra Banks is also not returning as hostCredit: Getty – Contributor Susan Boyle receives Golden Buzzer from Mel B which advances her straight into the finals on America’s Got Talent: The Champions

Mel, 43, will be able to console herself with the axing as she will be busy on the highly anticipated Spice Girls reunion tour when America’s Got Talent resumes filming.

The gigs begin on May 27 in Cardiff before taking in cities including Manchester, Sunderland and Bristol before finishing in London on June 15.

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‘America’s Got Talent’ is back on TV, and can you believe the show is in its 14th season?! This season has already brought a lot of changes when it comes to both hosting duties and the judging panel.

ICYMI, former host Tyra Banks left and was replaced by the new host Terry Crews. But you probably noticed that two ladies are also missing from the judging panel: Heidi Klum and Mel B.

They were replaced by Julianne Hough and Gabrielle Union, and of course, judges Howie Mandel and Simon Cowell are still on the panel. (Gabrielle gave out the Golden Buzzer last night to a blind singer with autism, and it was amazing.)

By the way, did you know Julianne Hough has the cutest love story?

But why did Heidi and Mel B leave?! Apparently there was no drama involved. Simon Cowell, who is an executive producer on the show, told USA Today, “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,” he said.

Plus, both ladies have super-packed schedules with new ventures. According to Variety, Heidi Klum is working on a new fashion show with Tim Gunn that will premiere on Amazon Prime Video. (I’m having major ‘Project Runway’ flashbacks!)

And of course, Mel B is on her reunion tour with the Spice Girls. According to People, Mel B and the girls (minus Victoria Beckham) just started a 13-show tour in Dublin last week.

While Heidi and Mel B will be missed, I can’t wait to see Gabrielle and Julianne bring their fresh perspectives to the show.

Emily Shiffer Emily Shiffer is a former digital web producer for Men’s Health and Prevention, and is currently a freelancer writer specializing in health, weight loss, and fitness.

Despite her popularity, Gabrielle Union will not return to America’s Got Talent after just one season. Fellow judge, Julianne Hough will also not be returning.

Union and Hough made their debuts as AGT judges earlier this year replacing longtime judges Mel B and Heidi Klum. According to NBC New York, despite their unexpected exit, the pair have projects of their own to focus on with Union returning to the Bad Boys spin-off series L.A.’s Finest. The series debuted last summer with Union reprising her role as “Syd,” whom she played in the 2003 hit film Bad Boys II, alongside co-star Jessica Alba.

According to People, Union described her first season on AGT as “emotional.”

“It’s emotional for me to watch people come so close to their dreams coming true and being so close,” she admitted. “Seeing their faces contort and anguish in pain, I don’t like it. I don’t find that entertaining.”

READ MORE: Janelle Monáe stars in ‘Antebellum’ teaser from producers of ‘Us’ and ‘Get Out’

Union also described a moment during her time as a judge where she was truly touched by a contestant; Kodi Lee, who is blind and has autism, gave a breath-taking performance during AGT‘s last season and went on to be crowned the season 14 winner. Union called Lee an inspiration and hoped his win would help others.

“Hopefully, it’s going to be a little easier for parents with special needs children to get the resources that they need,” she said. “All of them can get the chance for their dreams to come true and for them to reach their fullest potential.”

READ MORE: Gabrielle Union is bringing ‘Black Girl Magic’ to NBC

People reported that long-time judges Simon Cowell and Howie Mandel, as well as Terry Crews, who made his debut as AGT host last season, will be returning next season. As of Sunday, neither Union nor Hough has commented on their exit from the show and there is no word on who will be their replacements for the 15th season of the show.

Julianne Hough just opened up about Gabrielle Union leaving ‘America’s Got Talent’

Julianne Hough recently addressed the recent controversy of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” which reportedly fired Gabrielle Union from being a judge, CNN reports.

  • Hough left the show. She previously worked as a judge.

The details: Hough appeared on “The Today Show” Friday to promote her brother Derek Hough’s new holiday special. She was asked about the controversy surrounding the show allegedly firing Union, according to Entertainment Weekly.

The controversy: Union’s husband, Dwyane Wade, wrote on Twitter that his wife was fired from the show. Other reports from Variety and Vulture suggested there were some incidents before she left the show. Some of the reports suggested Union called out the show for a racist joke. There were reports people on set made racist jokes about Union’s hair, too.

Recent: Union shared a comment on Twitter about the firing decision.

“We had a lengthy 5-hour, and what I thought to be, productive meeting yesterday. I was able to, again, express my unfiltered truth. I led with transparency and my desire and hope for real change.”

Hough offered her own response.

“When I see that comment there, that excites me so much because that is what we need to start conversations and I just commend Gabrielle for speaking her truth and starting a conversation. I’m really proud of NBC, as well, for also showing up and starting a narrative and that’s what’s going to change the work place and the paradigm that we’ve been working in for many, many years and it’s shifting and I think that’s really exciting.”