London-born Simon Cowell is a successful television judge and mentor, well-known for his hit music reality shows, American Idol and The X-Factor. However, his first show, the hit 2001 series Pop Idol, based in England, was where he got his major start in reality shows.

Cowell was given the nickname “Mr. Nasty” after being brutally honest with contestants on his shows, many times to the point of having music hopefuls in tears after auditioning. However, he’s also responsible for launching numerous careers, including the hit boy band, One Direction.

In his personal life, Cowell has one child, a son named Eric.