CNN May Be Close to Hiring Piers Morgan: So Who Is He?

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REUTERS/Andrew Winning

America’s Got Talent judge Piers Morgan is reportedly close to taking over Larry King’s time slot on CNN. But he’s much more than NBC’s version of Simon Cowell.

Who is this guy, anyway? Some quick facts on why Morgan’s qualified to fill King’s suspenders:

  • Received a journalism degree from Harlow College in West Essex, U.K, and began his career at local newspapers in South London
  • Served as editor of the U.K’s Mirror until he was fired in 2004, after the paper published photos of British soldiers apparently abusing Iraqi prisoners of war. The photos were a hoax
  • Penned The Insider, a scathing, diary-style autobiography, in 2005
  • Has contributed to TIME (which, really, is all that matters), writing in 2007 about Paris restaurant Les Editeurs
  • Won Celebrity Apprentice in 2008, beating out country singer Trace Adkins after being cast as the show’s villain
  • Sits on the judging panel of Britain’s Got Talent and America’s Got Talent, where he often plays the “bad cop” character Simon Cowell made famous. NBC and CNN (which, like TIME, is owned by Time Warner) negotiated a deal to keep Morgan on America’s Got Talent and on CNN
  • Can sit on a bed with Paris Hilton during an interview (on Piers Morgan On … Las Vegas) and still ask tough questions, while only appearing slightly creepy
  • Currently hosts the series Piers Morgan’s Life Stories on British network ITV1, where he interviews celebrities and politicians in front of a live audience

If Morgan does in fact fill King’s time slot, he would probably be a fitting choice. He has serious journalism experience combined with his own star power and ease around celebrities. Looks like whenever a disgraced celebrity needs to clear his name, he’ll head to Piers first.