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A winter, all-star, international season for America’s Got Talent

A winter, all-star, international season for America’s Got Talent
Simon Cowell with fans at the America's Got Talent season 13 auditions. (Photo by Trae Patton/NBC)

NBC is extending its hit summer series America’s Got Talent into winter with America’s Got Talent: The Champions, a season that will bring back the best acts from the show’s 13-season life on NBC—plus acts from other Got Talent shows around the world.

America’s Got Talent: The Champions will feature “the most talented, memorable, wackiest and all-around favorites from past seasons,” which suggests that it won’t just be winners (“champions”) who return, or even finalists, but a much broader selection.

The new show will also include “some of the most popular acts from the other global Got Talent franchises, spanning 184 countries,” according to NBC. Jennifer Mullin, the CEO of AGT production company FremantleMedia North America, promised “a true celebration of culture and diversity.”

The show will air in the winter, but NBC hasn’t yet announced when the debut date will be, exactly—nor is it clear how many episodes will air or how many weeks it will span.

Simon Cowell, America's Got Talent season 13 auditions

Simon Cowell at America’s Got Talent season 13 auditions. He’ll executive producer America’s Got Talent: The Champions. (Photo by Trae Patton/NBC)

The press release says Simon Cowell will executive produce and will be “atop [the] judging panel once again,” but it does not mention other judges, so perhaps there could be a different set of judges for this special edition. Or perhaps they have just not signed deals with the current panel to appear on a winter season.

In the press release, Cowell said,

“I have always wanted to have a competition show for the very best of the best Got Talent acts from around the world. The variety and the talents of the acts who enter Got Talent globally are incredible and unbelievable.

Since America’s Got Talent was where it all started, I’m absolutely delighted to be launching this on NBC.”

Of course, a lot of the acts on America’s Got Talent are already international acts, and the cross-pollination between shows has created an environment in which Simon Cowell didn’t even recognize Britain’s Got Talent auditioners from their appearance on America’s Got Talent.

Debuting America’s Got Talent: The Champions in the winter will be a first for America’s Got Talent, which has been a summer series since its debut in 2006.

Other network shows have been taking advantage of  Last year, both Big Brother and Amazing Race aired seasons in winter, with Amazing Race filling the gap between seasons of Survivor and Big Brother competing against the Winter Olympics. And December has been a time for short seasons of shows like NBC’s The Sing Off and ABC’s The Great American Baking Show.

America’s Got Talent season 13 debuts in just over two weeks: on May 29.


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  • Andy Dehnart

    Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means.

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