‘America’s Got Talent’: Randy Jackson Weighs in on Gabrielle Union and Simon Cowell After Controversial Exit

Gabrielle Union was reportedly not asked to return to America’s Got Talent after speaking out against multiple alleged incidents. There were many celebrities who threw their support behind her. What does Randy Jackson, who worked with Simon Cowell on American Idol, think about the situation? This is what he had to say and more.

Gabrielle Union was fired after reportedly speaking out against racism

Union reportedly had a tough time working throughout the season for multiple reasons. One is that Cowell would reportedly smoke indoors even though it’s illegal in California, according to Vulture. She reportedly voiced her concerns about this “regularly” because she’s allergic to smoke. However, NBC staffers allegedly told her no one could stop him from smoking.

Jay Leno also reportedly made an offensive joke about a portrait of Cowell with dogs while he was filming, according to Vareity. Leno reportedly said the dogs looked like something “on the menu at a Korean restaurant.”

Union reportedly wanted producers to have this incident be reported to human resources. However, it was never taken to the department.

There was another claim that Union and Julianne Hough’s appearance was criticized while working. Union’s hair was reportedly considered “too Black” for the audience with her changing hairstyles multiple times. Hough was also not asked to return for another season.

Julianne Hough said she thinks everyone should be heard

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Hough claimed she had a “wonderful time” on the show. She also revealed that she’ll be in two specials airing on NBC. Later, she gave more of a reaction to the controversy.

“I would just say that — my goodness. I just believe and value at the highest regard that everybody has a voice and should be heard, first and foremost,” Hough said on People Now. “And then I believe that the paradigm of the workplace and how you do business and work with people now, it’s shifting, and I think that the people that really want to see change happen are going to authentically and positively … do that. And so that’s all I really have to say about that.”

SAG-AFTRA launched an investigation into the matter. NBC claimed it was working with Union through her representatives to hear more about her concerns.

Randy Jackson thinks they’ll figure it out

Former judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson backstage at FOX's American Idol Season 15 Finale
Former judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson backstage at FOX’s American Idol Season 15 Finale | FOX Image Collection via Getty Images

Jackson worked with Cowell for years on American Idol. He is also sympathetic to the actress. He talked about having hope for both parties working things out.

“It’s a tough situation. I’m sorry for her. I feel bad about that situation but I love her, “he told Us Weekly. “I’m sure they’ll figure it out. Cowell’s my boy, you know I mean I love him. It’s a great franchise. I’m sure they’ll work it out and figure it out.”

Other judges who have worked with Cowell don’t seem as hopeful. Howard Stern previously spoke out against him after the report hit about Union being fired.

“How is it that Simon Cowell has orchestrated this?” he asked on his radio show. Stern continued to talk about how women and men are viewed differently.

“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,” said Stern. The former judge said it’s “obvious” how the female judges are replaced for “hotter chicks and younger chicks.” Stern was a judge on America’s Got Talent from season 7 to 10.