Simon Cowell on Ryan Seacrest: Phony!

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Call him mean. Call him nasty. Call him abrasive.

But Simon Cowell has a better word for himself: real.

Simon Cowell on TV Guide Magazine

"I used to wind Ryan [Seacrest] up about this when I'd get accused of being constantly negative," Cowell tells TV Guide Magazine. "I'd say, 'Remember all the people who cried in these auditions and you'd say, 'I'm going to miss you so much. I care so much about you.' Have you ever picked up the phone and said 'Are you OK?' The answer is never. It's all for TV. The difference with me is I have no qualms saying whether I like you or dislike you. I find it more unkind when you give someone false hope."

Simon, of course, is out there promoting The X Factor, which debuts on Fox this Wednesday night. Why did he leave American Idol for it? Simple:

"I was making a lot of money on American Idol, but I did X Factor because I genuinely felt this was a better show...[last season] was completely different. It was not the show I was on. They've gone friendly. I knew it would do well."

Are you excited for The X Factor?

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Simon Cowell Biography

New American Idol Judges
Simon Cowell is our favorite American Idol judge. He's sometimes mean, but always honest and entertaining. He also knows how to put Paula... More »
Simon Phillip Cowell
Full Name
Brighton, East Sussex, England

Simon Cowell Quotes

It was a little bit like Chihuahua trying to be a tiger.

Simon Cowell [following David Archuleta's attempt to sing a Chris Brown song]

I’d pack your suitcase.

Simon Cowell [to Jason Castro, after the former sung "I Shot the Sheriff"]