Thursday, April 18, 2024

American Idol: Randy Jackson in the Dark About New Judges


Say goodbye to Kara DioGuardi. Fox has sent out a press release saying she’s “stepping down” from her judgeship. We know she was fired, but heck, whatever.

DioGuardi will continue to have a great career as songwriter-producer.

Meanwhile, even though press reports keep insisting on Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler as the new judges to sit around Randy Jackson, I wouldn’t bet the farm on it. Sources tell me nothing has been decided, and that no one has told Jackson anything. “He was never even told about Kara,” says a source. Calls to Jackson were not were not returned. But the word is that he was not informed of DioGuardi’s official departure. And he knows as little as we do about who his fellow judges might be.

Jackson will remain with the show, however. “He has a contract,” says a source.

But every name is still in motion with executive producer Nigel Lythgoe. Remember Lythgoe told me in February that he wanted Elton John.

“He’s not going to get him,” says a source. Chris Isaak‘s name is still in the mix. Frankly, they’d be better off getting Gene Simmons, someone who has nothing to lose by being hard on the contestants. Tyler and Lopez will be hard pressed to make fun of people who are their fans in real life.

Lythgoe has two weeks or less to make his final decisions.

And this: there’s still a persistent rumor that Paula Abdul is being talked to endlessly about coming back. It’s hard to since she has a contract with CBS.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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