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Simon Says "I Wasn't Listening. I'm Horrified!"

4/18/2007 2:40 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Simon CowellTMZ spoke with Simon Cowell this morning about last night's incident on "A.I.," in which Cowell sarcastically rolled his eyes after contestant Chris Richardson offered condolences to the families of the victims at Virginia Tech.

Cowell told TMZ, "I couldn't hear what Chris had said. I was talking to Paula. My reaction (rolling my eyes) was to what he had said previously, that singing nasally is a form of singing."

It's true, when the judges are off camera they frequently jab at each other as the singers do their thing.

Simon told TMZ he was shocked when he saw what went down: "When I watched the show back, I was horrified."

361 COMMENTS

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136.

aaaamy    

ok.......i watched the video over and over..........he was looking right at Chris (since Chris was speaking)....he THEN turns his head to Paula and THEN rolls his eyes.....HE WAS ROLLING HIS EYES AT WHAT CHRIS SAID. watch it more closely and you'll agree.

2708 days ago
137.

moonwind    

Chris is from Virginia, his remarks were well within his rights. Simon was not listening and this "eye roll", IMO, had nothing to do with Chris' statements about VT. It was a horrible miscalculation all the way around, but neither should be demonized.

2708 days ago
138.

George    

b If you people concentrated on other matters as much as you did Simon Cowells misunderstood reaction to something completely different from what you thoght it was,maybe some good would come out of it. But you couldnt take that,because then you would have nothing to bitch about. Get a life losers.

2708 days ago
139.

Up to interpretation    

I interpreted Simon's eye-rolling as his frustration with contestants who attempt to win popularity through things other than their own performance or use air time for their own personal agendas. I seem to recall an incident where a contestant wished his father happy birthday and Simon criticized it. I think his reaction to Chris's comment was not a reflection of his sensitivity to the VT tragedy but rather annoyance that Chris felt it appropriate to make it his own agenda.

2708 days ago
140.

aaaamy    

hey 138- you need to watch the video again............he was listening to chris and looking at chris, then looked at paula and then rolled his eyes. how could he be talking to paula when she was staring straight ahead at chris listening to him..........THE CAMERA SHOWS HIM LISTENING TO CHRIS AS HE"S TALKING ABOUT VA TECH AND THEN SHOWS HIM TURN TO PAULA AND THEN ROLL HIS EYES

2708 days ago
141.

Marci    

I saw that and immediately thought his reaction was to Chris' lame (although I love the guy!) excuse last night. (He didn't NEED an excuse, though.) Anyway, my point is, I did not think that Simon was rolling his eyes to Chris' comment regarding VT at all. And even if Simon wasn't as impacted by it than others, someone like Simon would never roll their eyes at such a comment about something like that. And further proof of this was when he felt he needed to make that comment when he did.

Simon's innocent!

2708 days ago
142.

zero    

#10. Dear Mandy, Please learn how to spell.........

2708 days ago
143.

Jon    

I believe Simon. I also say shame on any contestant who uses the Va Tech tragedy to elicit sympathy to get votes. And if Sanjaya wins, goodbye American Idol.

2708 days ago
144.

IRV BRONSTEIN    

I THINK THE MEDIA IS BLOWING THIS UP. SIMON IS OK JUST TRUTHFUL WHICH A LOT OF PEOPLE DONT LIKE

2708 days ago
145.

AG    

Simon's not that heartless. He probably wasn't listening, the boy can't sing (what can I say)

2708 days ago
146.

DMC    

Being associated with music and a published author, I can tell you they are both a tough business. That being said, I believe Simon is the ONLY one on the show who tells these young hopefulls what they need to hear, instead of what they want to hear. Like I said, it's a tough business and to make it these kids are going to have to grow a bit of a tough skin.

But as far as last night is concerned, there's no way in hell you can get me to believe Simon meant any disrespect for what happened in Virginia.

He's tough - yes - for their own good. But I truly doubt he'd ever disrespect anyone's grief.

2708 days ago
147.

Invisible    


Leave Simon alone,
If you have a problem with him
I suggest that you don't watch "Idol"

2708 days ago
148.

Sonoma    

I would like to know what Ryan was saying when Chris started to studder. It sounds like he is saying "quit while your ahead". No one has focused on this insensitive comment.

2708 days ago
149.

Cynthia    

Of course Simon didn't do anything like that! Crazy to even consider that as a possibilty.

2708 days ago
150.

itneverends    

here we go again.. some people look for the slightest thing to slam someone over, everytime there's a tragedy someone else gets blamed....it's america you have a right to say or express what you want...some just need to mind their own business.

2708 days ago
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