The Prince of Wales has praised music mogul Simon Fuller for creating the ‘extraordinary phenomenon’ of Pop Idol.

Prince Charles recorded a video tribute to Simon which was played at an awards ceremony in Hollywood.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown also sent a message to the Producers Guild Awards in Los Angeles.

Simon, the man behind Pop Idol and the Spice Girls, received the Visionary Award for the ‘unique and uplifting quality’ of his work.

He is a supporter of the Prince’s Trust, and Charles said in his speech: “Simon, of course, is well-known to millions as the creator of the extraordinary phenomenon known in the United Kingdom as Pop Idol and in your country as American Idol.

“He has been one of the most effective and generous ambassadors for my Trust, which I set up 32 years ago to help the most disadvantaged young people in the United Kingdom.

“There are many young people in the United Kingdom whose lives have been transformed and, in some cases, saved – literally – thanks to the contribution which Simon has made.”

Mr Brown praised Simon as a ‘talented and brilliant person’, adding: “The stars he has discovered or managed have gone on to huge success around the world, from the Spice Girls to David Beckham.”

He said of Pop Idol: “His idea was that in small towns across the world, people living ordinary lives have extraordinary talent, and all they would need is the courage and the chance to show what they could do.”