From Unknown to TV Star — Check Out Simon Cowell’s Transformation Through the Years

Way back in 2002 an unknown found himself at the end of a judges table ready to hand harsh feedback to thousands of hopefuls in a little show known as American Idol. That unknown? Simon Cowell. Fast-forward more than 15 years later and everyone and their mom knows who the English TV personality is.

Before being brutally honest to singers eager to break into the entertainment business, Simon, now 59, had a job in the mail room at EMI Music Publishing, where his father, Eric, worked as an executive. However, one of the hardest working men in the industry would make his way up that ladder, eventually starting his own record label named E&S Music. But things were about to get even better for the music manager.

Simon Cowell
Broadimage/Shutterstock

The entrepreneur would soon find himself in the front of the camera in 2001 in the British TV reality show Pop Idol, and then make a move overseas to entertain American audiences. Simon is currently on America’s Got Talent, judging more than just singers. Aside from focusing on his flourishing career, Simon has also become a family man.

The TV producer has been dating Lauren Silverman since 2013. They now share a son, Eric, 5. Fatherhood has even changed the once snarky judge. “He’s madly in love with his son,” an insider exclusively told Closer Weekly. “He’ll openly tell his friends his intense feeling he has for Eric. He’s turned into a big softie with him.” And even though these days Simon is one of the most notable men on TV, his young child has no idea.

“He’s very funny. I was with him yesterday and he said, ‘Daddy, how come everybody smiles at you?’” Simon recalled to Us Weekly. “And I went, ‘No, it’s you! They all know your name.’ I said, ‘From the minute you were born, for some reason, everybody knew your first name.’ He went, ‘Really?’ I said, ‘Yeah! They knew your name.’ So I said, ‘It’s you!’” This should be even more proof how less harsh Simon has become throughout the last decade.

Scroll on down below to see how Simon has changed through the years!

More in Style
Simon Cowell Lauren Silverman
Keeping Active! Simon Cowell and Girlfriend Lauren Bike With Son Eric
Simon Cowell and Lauren Silverman fresh back from the weekend in Cabo' Mexico were seen arriving at 'AGO' Restaurant for the 'America's Got Talent' party in West Hollywood, CA
Simon Cowell and Lauren Silverman Enjoy Parents' Night Out
Simon Cowell Lauren Silverman Eric Cowell
Simon Cowell and Girlfriend Lauren Silverman Enjoy the Carnival With Their Son Eric — Pics!