It seems new negative stories about the behind-the-scenes of “America’s Got Talent” just keep on coming. The fallout started last week when Gabrille Union was fired as a judge for reportedly speaking out about alleged misconduct of people at NBC. Now a source tells People that Simon Cowell, the face of the show, is no treat to work with himself.
“It’s true that ‘America’s Got Talent’ is a boy’s club. Simon runs the show and as long as he’s there, he will continue to do so,” the source said, adding the people who work on the show “rarely tell him ‘no.’”
“Everything goes by him and he’s rubbed a lot of people the wrong way,” the source continued.
Former judge Howard Stern recently spoke out against Cowell, too. “How is it that Simon Cowell has orchestrated this? He sets it up that the men stay, no matter how ugly they are, no matter how old they are, no matter how fat they are, no matter how talentless they are,” he said.
On Monday, another former judge, Sharon Osbourne, talked about her experience on “America’s Got Talent.” “I left. And that’s the truth. I left because NBC, not because of the show. I had my own problems with the network. I don’t know about any of her (Union’s) concerns about the show.”
“Obviously, there wasn’t anybody of color on the panel when I was there. So I honestly can’t say. But when I was there it was, you know, a great show to work on,” she continued. “Everybody’s experience on a show is different, and I was at that show for six years. I didn’t get let go, however, I left.”
Union reported to the network that she was allegedly told her hairstyles were “too black” for the show’s audience, and also that she felt that Jay Leno had made a racially insensitive joke when he was a guest judge. There were other reported concerns raised by Union, as well.
The Time’s Up organization released a statement about the whole ordeal this week:
For too long, NBCUniversal has enabled toxic workplaces by protecting the careers of powerful men like Matt Lauer at the expense of women who speak out and are silenced through non-disclosure agreements.
Now, Gabrielle Union was allegedly fired for speaking up about racist and inappropriate behavior she encountered working on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.” Union reportedly endured and witnessed racially-insensitive comments and excessive criticism about her physical appearance, and it also appears she was punished for speaking out.
It’s time for NBC to stop protecting powerful men at the expense of its workers and address its toxic workplace culture, once and for all.