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EXCLUSIVE: Simon Cowell on How Tyra Banks Landed the 'America's Got Talent' Gig

by Jennifer Drysdale 4:05 PM PDT, May 25, 2017
Playing EXCLUSIVE: Simon Cowell on How Tyra Banks Landed the 'America's Got Talent' Gig

It didn't take long for Tyra Banks to win over Simon Cowell!

ET's Cameron Mathison sat down with Cowell at his Beverly Hills, California, home earlier this month, where he opened up about how Banks became host of America's Got Talent after Nick Cannon's exit earlier this year.

EXCLUSIVE: Simon Cowell Admits He Was Shocked When Nick Cannon Quit 'AGT,' Talks New Host Tyra Banks

"We started with no host. Then one of us got a phone call saying Tyra Banks was interested. So I told her, 'Come over to the house tomorrow,'" he recalled. "She turns out, ripped jeans, not really any makeup, sat down and within five minutes, we literally all said, 'We would love you to join the show.'"

"It was that quick," he added.

A production source on America's Got Talent tells ET that Banks has been off to a great start since joining the show in March. According to the source, Banks' real test will be when the show goes live, because she often requires several takes.

For now, the source says, "Tyra is great with the contestants and gets along very well with the judges."

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In fact, Cowell -- who gave ET a tour of his 9,000 square foot home, which boasts six bedrooms, six bathrooms, a massage room and lap pool -- said that he and Banks bonded over being first time parents.

"I haven't met her son, but she's met [my 3-year-old son] Eric, and they got on really well straight away," he revealed, adding that his son is starting to realize that his dad is famous.

"Funnily enough, we went out the other day and he said to me, 'How come everyone knows your name?' I went, 'I don't know. I've got no idea, Eric. It happens sometimes,'" he said. "So, I think he's beginning to understand that I'm actually on TV for a reason, because he used to get confused."

"Now, he understands the show, and he's actually going to be a great little judge," Cowell gushed.

EXCLUSIVE: Nick Cannon Says Leaving 'AGT' Was a 'Calculated' Decision

The America's Got Talent crew has really become like family. See how they're supporting Mel B through her divorce drama in the video below. 

Season 12 of America's Got Talent premieres May 30 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.

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