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Mel. B to replace Sharon Osbourne as 'America's Got Talent' judge

  |   Feb. 21, 2013 at 3:45 PM
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LOS ANGELES, Feb. 21 (UPI) -- British pop star Melanie Brown is to replace Sharon Osbourne for the upcoming eighth season of "America's Got Talent," NBC announced Thursday.

The former Spice Girl will serve alongside returning judges Howard Stern and Howie Mandel on the NBC talent show, which is to kick off its new season May 28. The winner of the competition will take home a $1 million prize.

"This exciting addition of the dynamic Mel B to our lineup of judges promises that fans will see a strong, talented and opinionated woman match up against our equally outspoken judges Howard Stern and Howie Mandel," Paul Telegdy, NBC's president of alternative and late night programming, said in a statement Thursday. "Her presence has powder-keg potential for lots of fireworks this summer as the No. 1-rated 'America's Got Talent' will return with even bigger and more exotic acts than any year before."

"I'm thrilled to be part of this season of 'America's Got Talent' and to get to work with Howie and Howard," said Mel B. "It's so exciting to be bringing some Girl Power to the panel."

Brown previously served as a judge on the Australian edition of "The X Factor" and as co-host of "Dancing with the Stars Down Under."

Osbourne announced her departure from "America's Got Talent" last August, alleging NBC fired her son, Jack, from the physically arduous competition show, "Stars Earn Stripes," because he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

The network has denied any wrongdoing.

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