Tyra Banks Named New Host For ‘America’s Got Talent’

Tyra Banks

While the ratings for this season’s Celebrity Apprentice with Arnold Schwarzenegger were not the best, Tyra Banks must have made an impression with her appearances on the show because NBC has just announced that Banks will be the new host of America’s Got Talent, a role that was vacated by Nick Cannon who had been the show’s host since 2009.

According to Variety, Cannon told a racially charged joke on a Showtime comedy special in February. The joke involved using NBC as an “acronym incorporating a racial slur” and NBC threatened to fire Cannon because of it, said Variety.

“After days of deliberating over some extremely disappointing news that I was being threatened with termination by Executives because of a comedy special that was only intended to bring communities closer together, I was to be punished for a joke,” Cannon wrote in a Facebook post. He later quit the show over it.

Meanwhile, Banks, who has been the host of America’s Next Top Model for 23 cycles, is practically giddy about her new assignment.

“Since I was a little girl, I’ve been obsessed with grandiose acts and performers who make the seemingly impossible possible,” said Banks.

“I love how AGT brings that feeling into everyone’s home, capturing the best of people who come out and give it their all to make those big, fierce and outrageous dreams come true. I look forward to connecting with the dreamers, having fun and giving hugs and words of encouragement when needed. And maybe I’ll get one or two performers to smize for the audience!”

The feeling appears to be mutual.

“Tyra is the complete package: Out-of-this-world talented, funny, brilliant and all heart. In whatever she has done, she has always connected with audiences around the world,” said Paul Telegdy, NBC’s president of alternative and reality.

“Her vivacious spirit will infuse AGT in a big way.”

Simon Cowell, creator of the show and now a host for the American edition posted, “Welcome to the America’s Got Talent family, Tyra! This is really exciting” and Trish Kinane, President of Entertainment Programming for Fremantle North America stated, “Not only is Tyra smart and beautiful, she’s also warm, compassionate and a lot of fun. She will fit right into the crazy world of AGT.”

After years of modeling for Victoria’s Secret and appearing on the covers of GQ, Sports Illustrated, and others, Banks created and has been the executive producer for America’s Next Top Model which is now airing in 186 countries with 26 international versions of the show. Banks has won two Emmy Awards for The Tyra Show and has been on Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World list, twice.


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Judges of AGT

America’s Got Talent has been the most-watched TV show during the summer for 11 years in a row with last year’s season reaching its highest adult 18-49 average (a 3.0 rating) in three years and the show’s most-watched season (13.5 million viewers) in five years. The show is also a social media juggernaut boasting of more than 1 billion video views.

Ready to embark on its 12th season beginning in Los Angeles, America’s Got Talent’s returning judges are Simon Cowell, Mel B., Heidi Klum, and Howie Mandel. The show will begin airing later this summer.

[Featured Image by Chris Haston/NBC]