Beauty mogul Tyra Banks is the new host of “America’s Got Talent” after the controversy surrounding Nick Cannon’s racial joke led to his departure from the hit NBC show.
AGT judge and comedian Howie Mandel announced Banks’ new gig on Twitter Sunday, March 12, with the former supermodel tweeting a confirmation moments later.
— Howie Mandel (@howiemandel) March 12, 2017
— Tyra Banks (@tyrabanks) March 12, 2017
“Since I was a little girl, I’ve been obsessed with grandiose acts and performers who make the seemingly impossible possible,” Banks said in a release. “I love how AGT brings that feeling into everyone’s home, capturing the best of people who come out and give it their all to make those big, fierce and outrageous dreams come true. I look forward to connecting with the dreamers, having fun and giving hugs and words of encouragement when needed.
“And maybe I’ll get one or two performers to smize for the audience,” she added, “smize” being a term that combines the phrase “smile with your eyes.”
Banks’ arrival comes after Cannon ditched his 8-year-long position in February after he alleged NBC executives were going to push him out over a joke he made about being Black in his Showtime comedy special.
“I wish AGT and NBC the best in its upcoming season, but I cannot see myself returning,” Cannon said. “There will always be a ‘Do as I say’ mentality that mirrors society’s perception of women and minorities, and only a few will stand up against it.”
AGT judge Heidi Klum and comedian-actor Marlon Wayans tweeted their congratulatory messages to Banks. Wayans was reported to be among the top three hosting candidates, along with actors Brandon Mychal Smith and Tone Bell.
— Heidi Klum (@heidiklum) March 13, 2017
— marlon wayans (@MarlonWayans) March 13, 2017
Fans eagerly posted about their excitement on the former “America’s Next Top Model” host’s Instagram page.