By Yvonne Villarreal
Los Angeles Times
---- — LOS ANGELES — Howard Stern has signed on for another season of “America’s Got Talent.”
The outspoken radio personality made the announcement on his SiriusXM radio show yesterday. NBC also issued an announcement that he’d be returning to the talent-competition show in the summer.
In true Stern fashion, he displayed a healthy dose of self-esteem in doing so, telling his radio listeners: “Believe me, if I was the only judge, I think the show would be terrific.”
He is the first judge confirmed to be making a return. Fellow judge Howie Mandel has not yet decided if he’ll come back. Sharon Osbourne, in conflict with NBC over her son’s involvement with “Stars Earn Stripes,” has said she will not return.
Stern joined “America’s Got Talent” last season, taking up the spot once occupied by Piers Morgan. Despite the buzz his addition drummed up (including the Parents Television Council, a watchdog group, calling for advertisers to boycott the series), ratings for the show dipped. But the peacock network doesn’t seem too concerned.
“Howard Stern’s towering presence and opinions on last season’s show as a new judge made a dramatic impact and added a sharper edge to the fascinating developments on stage,” NBC president of alternative and late-night programming Paul Telegdy said in a statement.
“We know that Howard believes in ‘America’s Got Talent’ — which remains America’s top-rated summer series — and that dedication comes across in a genuine way to our viewers who share his passion about our amazing talent competition.”