Original judges Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson, and Paula Abdul sat down with Kelly to reminisce on season one.
“I actually, genuinely do not believe that we would have been sitting here today if you hadn’t entered the show,” Simon said. “We had to find a star who was going to sell records.”
While he was on the show to look for major star power, he wasn’t too convinced it would be a success. “I really thought it would last about two weeks and we’d get thrown off the air,” he noted.
Kelly admitted she had no idea what she was getting herself into when she auditioned for the show. “When I walked in, I’ll tell you, I knew nothing,” she admitted. “I didn’t know it was a TV show until I walked into the audition and was in front of y’all. I was like, ‘Paula Abdul’s here. Some Simon dude, some English dude.’”
Kelly asked the judges whether there was ever a fight they couldn’t come back from. “Every hour?” Simon joked.
“A lot of them,” Randy added. Paula then turned to Simon, saying, “Don’t even start with me!”
“It’s not my fault you kept quitting,” he joked back.
Although all three judges have moved on to other successful ventures, Simon would still love to get the gang back together for another project. “If I’m being honest with you, this does make me think, if I had one wish, it would be to make another show with us again,” he said to Randy and Paula.
“I’ll tell you why because apart from the fact that we had so much fun and like I said, to credit you, Kelly, we wouldn’t be here without you, the fact that you are one of the most successful singers in the world,” he added. “Unlike the majority, you are the same person off-camera as you are on camera.”
“Our legacy, genuinely, are the artists who we discovered over this seven-year period,” Simon concluded. Then, they were greeted with one of those artists. Justin Guarini, season one runner-up, came out later to talk about his career in commercials and on Broadway following the show’s success.
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