Lurching into its finale, the panel now includes Harry Connick Jr., Lopez and Urban.

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“To be honest I found that to be embarrassing,” of his reputation.

Cowell, who now serves as a judge alongside Abdul on Fox's "The X Factor," says the two at first couldn't stand each other and would fly on separate planes, but he later "considered" engaging in a relationship with her.

Cowell and Abdul have poked fun at the rumors they were dating in the past, including in an Idol skit where the two were seen on a date and later sharing a kiss.

, judges Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell were the Sam and Diane of the show -- they bickered and sparred, but under all their combativeness there was an undeniable sexual tension that was super awkward all the time.

Both women were then certain that they were the one for Ben, which led to a painful finale when the Bachelor harshly dumped Jo Jo Fletcher and chose Lauren Bushnell to be his bride.

Known for his scathing critical remarks as a judge on "American Idol", Simon Cowell began building his way into fame working at his father's company as a mailroom clerk at EMI Music Publishing while he was teen.

Despite their ups and their downs, Paula gave Simon a funny and truly touching send off during his final episode that really summed up their entire on-screen relationship.

After poking fun at her long-time co-judge, Paula got sentimental, telling Simon that their time together has brought her "immeasurable joy." "I love all the fun we've had together, I love all the laughter we've shared together, and American Idol is not going to be the same without you," she sincerely said.

Asked whether Abdul wanted a relationship with Cowell, he replied: "A million percent." "I considered it, but then I thought, ' I don't think the after would be as good as the before,'" he said.

"I'd let her stay for a few hours, but then it would have to be goodnight," he joked.

Cowell's career experienced rapid advance with several other shows he created, including "America's Got Talent" and "The X-Factor", through his own record label SYCOtv.