LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Weeks away from the premiere of Season 8 of "American Idol," Simon Cowell has admitted there has been tension on the set of the hit Fox show. During a recent interview with Billy Bush for Access Hollywood and "The Billy Bush" show, Cowell confirmed that the addition of new judge Kara DioGuardi has taken some adjustment.
"You know what, it's like when you've had dinner with three friends for years and now someone else joins the table — it's a bit odd," Simon told Billy. "That's what it was like at the beginning. I genuinely couldn't make up my mind whether I liked it or not. And then, when she was doing the Hollywood round she started to grow on me and I think she's ballsy."
When asked if Kara and Paula were walking on eggshells while filming Hollywood week, which Simon and the cast taped in Los Angeles recently, the British judge said that they were.
"A little bit, but you know what it's like, Billy — when you work with other people you never want the people that you work with to do well," he said. "You don't. It's just not in your human nature to want that."
And the always-frank Simon was first to admit he doesn't rejoice when his co-panelists secure new gigs.
"If I read about their deals, I'm not exactly opening bottles of champagne in joy because something good is happening in their lives," he said. "I'm not like that and trust me, they're not doing the same for me."
While he may not be celebrating Randy and Paula's independent successes, Simon is happy to take credit for a change he said has occurred with Kara since she was first brought on board.
"She's looking better and I really mean this — I think I have made her look better, and I'm not kidding here… Physically [she] definitely looks better since she's been working with me," Simon said. "I think she just got to terms with the way I like people to look and I think she changed her wardrobe, her hair, because she heard me saying, 'I like this' and 'I like that,' so I definitely had a positive affect on the way that she looks."
And with her improved attire, Simon said he was able to notice more about "Idol's" newest star.
"Then I realized during the Hollywood round, she's actually quite funny," he said. "I think she knows what she's talking about, so she's growing on me… She's quite hot now actually. But I promise you, you'll see the difference. She looks better now."