The irony of American Idol’s big reveal of the new judges panel yesterday, is that Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick Jr. were former producer, Nigel Lythgoe’s, “dream team”…last season!
After the So You Think You Can Dance final performance show last night Nigel–who produces and judges the FOX show–told Yahoo Music’s Lyndsey Parker that he suggested the trio to the network, but with the big bucks flowing out for salaries, TPTB ultimately had the final say, and decided to go in another direction.
Nigel said it feels “like a kick in the teeth” but at least the new producers have made one good decision this season. “And it’s a great decision,” he said.
When asked if he’d make a return to Idol, a la Randy Jackson, who will be the new in-house mentor this season (after initially being dumped as judge), Nigel said, “I very much doubt it.” He then added: “I think Randy is a fantastic ambassador, [but] I’m sorry that they’ve lost [former mentor] Jimmy Iovine. Jimmy Iovine was a good voice and a good opinion, whether you agreed with him or disagreed with him.”
Ultimately, despite having been fired by FOX, Nigel refused to badmouth the show he launched 11 years ago. “It’s going to be an interesting season, one that I think they’ve now put on the right track…It’s never going to be the same, it’s never going to be in that 35-40 million mark, but the program is still brilliant…For me, every single season that I worked on ‘American Idol,’ even when we were going downhill last season, has been brilliant. It’s been an honor to work on it.”
Via Yahoo Music