Nigel Lythgoe on American Idol: “I Don’t Like Fourth Judges”

Nigel Lythgoe, overseeing auditions for So You Think You Can Dance in New York City this week, tells the NY Post he would not have added a 4th judge to American Idol if he were still in charge.

“I don’t like fourth judges, ” Lythgoe told The Post yesterday. “I think once you’ve been told ‘You suck, ‘ you don’t need to be told another three times.”

The decision was made after Lythgoe stepped down as the show’s executive producer late last spring.

Lythgoe says he has met DioGuardi only once. “I think she’s a lovely lady, and I think she’s relevant and up to date, but, personally, I would never have done it.

“We’ve had lots of fourth judges, as guests, which was OK for me because they would be in one show and then you get rid of them the next…”

It’s been reported that Simon Cowell has taken on a larger role behind the scenes at Idol.   Nigel wonders if Simon has bitten off more than he can chew:

“Simon has got a very good sense and awareness about him, ” Lythgoe says, noting that Cowell has made huge successes of “America’s Got Talent, ” and the British “Idol” knock-off “X-Factor.”

“But he’s never produced anything on television, ” says Lythgoe.

“As an executive producer, he can be an adviser and I think that’s fair enough because he knows what he’s doing.

“But at the end of the day, you have to leave it for the producers to produce, because if you’re in it, you’re seeing it from a completely different perspective and he’s going to need to realize that.

“Sometimes you can’t see the woods through the trees and you tend to lose the most important thing, which is so often forgotten: common sense.”

Meow!   Why so bitter Nigel?   Could it be Nigel didn’t walk out, but was pushed out last spring?

Nigel is the creator and executive producer of   So You Think You Think You Can Dance, which also has a panel of   4 judges, but the fourth spot revolves between different guest choreographers.   That’s still 4 people telling a contestant they suck.   So what’s the difference?

Correction:   So You Think You Can Dance usually has a 3 judge panel, unless Napolean and Tabitha are sitting on the panel.

About mj santilli 34832 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!