Sharon Osbourne: Simon Cowell Convinced Me To Stay
Looks like the friction between judges Sharon Osbourne and Piers Morgan displayed during Tuesday night's second-season premiere of America's Got Talent wasn't just for the show's cameras.
"[I've] never sat down with Piers, just the two of us. Nor would I," Osbourne told TV Guide about her icy relationship with Morgan in the magazine's June 11 issue. "I talk to him about what we are doing, but in between contestants there is no communication. It is not that we don't get along, it's that we just don't have any sort of relationship. I wouldn't hang out with him or go have a cup of tea."
The riff between the two apparently stems from America's Got Talent 2's Dallas auditions, which aired during the show's two-hour season premiere, and a cheerleading routine performed by Breeze, 9-year-old girl from Carson City, NV.
After Breeze performed, Morgan criticized her mother for pushing her daughter into something he thought she didn't want to do, a comment that didn't sit too well with Osbourne, who accused her fellow judge of putting the young girl "on trial."
"It was a day where there was one young contestant after another," she told TV Guide. "[Morgan] has a definite dislike for children or younger artists. It was appalling behavior. I just couldn't take the way he was talking to them. And it was not just the children, he was being particularly appalling to everybody that day. I just had it. I was ready to scream."
NBC's cameras caught Osbourne ripping up her audition information paperwork and declaring, "I can't take this anymore" before storming off the stage. Cameras followed her backstage, where she said she was removing her make-up and "going home" with seemingly no intention of returning to her duties.
And according to Osbourne, quitting the show was exactly what she planned to do, at least until Simon Cowell, who created America's Got Talent and works alongside Osbourne as a judge on his American Idol-like British The X-Factor reality competition series, stepped in.
"The director got Simon on the phone," she said. "Simon is always the voice of reason. He had his entrepreneur's hat on, and he said, 'You have got to be professional. You signed a contract here, and you could really get into a lot of trouble. You have worked with worse people in your life. You can handle this.' I sat down and phoned my husband and my kids, and had a little cup of tea.
[Husband Ozzy Osbourne] is a fan of the show. So he said, 'Oh, I want to go to the finale.' [former Armed & Famous celebrity cop Jack Osbourne] said, 'Mom, [Morgan] would love to get rid of you. If you quit, he gets his way.'"