Howard Stern is 'America's Got Talent's' newest judge
Stern will replace CNN host Piers Morgan at the judges' table, alongside Howie Mandel and Sharon Osbourne.
Speculation about Stern joining the show has been rampant for more than a month, ever since Morgan announced he was leaving to concentrate on his CNN gig. But Thursday morning, Stern made it official.
On his SiriusXM show's Twitter feed, the announcement went out: "It's official -- Howard just signed on the dotted line -- he is now the newest judge on America's Got Talent!"
Stern discussed the new gig on the satellite radio show, revealing that he would begin shooting in February and would travel the country for the audition portion of the talent competition.
The entire production, which had been located in Los Angeles for the last six seasons, will relocate to New York to accommodate Stern's satellite radio show.
Though the financial terms of Stern's deal weren't disclosed, the New York Post reported in November that he was asking for $20 million.
Although Stern's on-air sidekick, Robin Quivers, said she was happy for the new judge, not everyone will be pleased. The Parents Television Council warned in November that selecting Stern as a judge for the family-friendly NBC series was a bad move and that the result would be the loss of tens of millions of advertising dollars.
"Such a move smacks of desperation by the once-proud peacock network. Any short-term buzz from Stern's shock value will result in a longer-term decline as families abandon the show for more suitable programming," PTC President Tim Winter said in a statement.
On Monday, Stern had future colleague Osbourne and two of her co-hosts on "The Talk,"Julie Chen and Sara Gilbert, on his show, and he took Osbourne to task for what he said was her tendency to overly praise gay contestants on "America's Got Talent."
"To like someone because they're gay is ridiculous," Stern told Osbourne.
He went on to tell her that changes would come with his arrival, "You and Howie will learn how to behave. And we'll structure that show differently."
"America's Got Talent" will return for its seventh season this summer.
-- Patrick Kevin Day
Photo: Howard Stern. Brendan McDermid / Reuters