Keith Urban Confirmed To Return To ‘American Idol;’ Jennifer Lopez Could Soon Follow
American Idol was bound to have a shakeup at the judges table after last season’s ratings mess, and Nicki Minaj, Mariah Carey and Randy Jackson making it known that they had no intention of returning.
Keith Urban, who’d stated back in May that he’d love to continue on the show, officially survived the cut, reported E! News. Fox chairman Kevin Reilly confirmed the good news for the country star on Thursday. Also likely to return – after a one year hiatus – is singer/actress Jennifer Lopez.
"Keith did a great job last year, the fans really liked him, Reilly said at the 2013 Summer TCA Press Tour. With a new panel, you are going to see that Keith is a really funny guy." As for Lopez, Reilly said, "Jennifer has been a close part of the show all along… there have been discussions there. There is no deal with her or anyone else."
Lopez is apparently still in negotiations with the network. She’s “very close to signing a deal with Fox to return to American Idol next season,” a source told People. “Both Fox and Jennifer are very happy about this and want it to happen very much."
Even if both Urban and Lopez return to Idol, that still leaves two spots on the panel vacant. BlackEyed Peas performer will-i-am and Jennifer Hudson could be tapped to fill the spots, according to Entertainment Weekly, but such reports are only rumored. Whoever is added to the panel, however, they’re not likely to be the antagonistic type.
Reilly said that the new panel will be composed of “comfortable judges that make [American Idol] comfortable to view,” and promised – yet again – that the show will be less about the judges and more about the contestants.
– Chelsea Regan
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