Report: Piers Morgan and David Hasselhoff clash at 'Talent' audition
By Christopher Rocchio, 04/13/2009
David Hasselhoff apparently got a little chippy with Piers Morgan when the two judges disagreed about the fate of a potential America's Got Talent contestant.
Hasselhoff threatened to head butt Morgan in-front of a live studio audience during the Miami auditions for America's Got Talent's upcoming fourth season, the U.K.'s Daily Mail newspaper reported Saturday.
"It all flared up over a husband-and-wife magic act. The couple had lost all their money in the recession and this was their last chance. Hasselhoff voted no and the audience went crazy booing him," an audience member told the Mail.
"Then [fellow judge] Sharon Osbourne voted yes and so it all came down to Piers's vote. He voted to send them through to the next round, the crowd went crazy, the couple's kids came on in tears -- and then Hasselhoff went nuts."
The audience member claims Hasselhoff then began "verbally assaulting" Morgan, who responded by "giving back as good as he was getting."
"Suddenly David stood up, walked around the judges' table and got right in Piers's face," the witness told the Mail.
"Then he threatened to head butt him. He said it loudly and clearly and everyone heard him. David was out of control, shouting and swearing. It was a full-on verbal assault. He was hurling all sorts of abuse at Piers, who looked genuinely upset and was momentarily shocked into silence. He was shaking his head and just staring daggers at David."
The audience then began to boo Hasselhoff before the incident ended.
"They turned off the cameras and all three of the judges left the stage," the audience member told the Mail.
Filming was subsequently suspended for 20 minutes while producers "held crisis talks backstage," according to the Mail, which added all three judges eventually continued with the auditions.
Morgan declined to directly comment on the incident when subsequently questioned about it.
"I don't want to comment about this because what happens on tour should stay on tour," he told the Mail. "But David is a good friend of mine and life with The Hoff is always unpredictably entertaining."
The verbal altercation is similar to an incident that occurred prior to America's Got Talent's Summer 2007 second season when Osbourne threatened to quit over Morgan's "harsh comments to a young contestant."
The altercation between Osbourne and Morgan eventually aired during America's Got Talent's second-season premiere -- and odds are Hasselhoff and Morgan's dispute will be broadcast sometime during the show's fourth season, which premieres June 23 on NBC.