Oh NO You Didn’t: Reports Say “American Idol” Tried To Replace Mariah Carey With Former Judge Jennifer Lopez Mid-Season

April 24, 2013  |  

For American Idol, the struggle continues.

Word on the street is…aka, according to The Hollywood Reporter, in an effort to salvage a season that saw ratings hit their lowest ever, producers of the show were hoping to replace Mariah Carey with former judge Jennifer Lopez just some weeks ago. Mimi and her people were able to shut down the possible swap out by threatening legal action against the show, and the possibility of that forced producers to back down from their supposed-to-be-secret plans. But the head of reality shows for FOX, Mike Darnell, was allegedly so worried about the dip in ratings this season that he was hoping a surprise change in judges would pull viewers in. Lopez is planning to show up on the show’s season finale in May, but it’s not clear if she will just be performing, helping with the contestants, or what. But Lopez was a popular judge during her tenure on the show (2011-12), so I’m sure they’re excited to get her back if even for a hot second.

However, Idol producer Nigel Lythgoe, who is a judge on the FOX show, So You Think You Can Dance?, denies such reports or rumors saying, “I have not been included in any conversation regarding replacing Mariah with Jen this season.”

Either way, The Hollywood Reporter says that their sources are confirming that there will be another judge shake-up when this season is over: “…insiders say a search already has begun to replace Carey, most likely Nicki Minaj and possibly the entire judge’s panel for next season.”

Yikes, it sounds like whether or not Mariah leaves mid-season or after the season, she’s probably going to get the boot. As someone who has watched the show from time to time, I can say that honestly, as talented and legendary as Mariah Carey is, she’s NOT a good judge. At all. For all the personality it seems she has, it doesn’t show up on camera, she’s too too kind, and some of her comments come off as side-eye worthy. But do people need to try and replace folks behind their backs? No. A good warning would probably do wonders. And trying to replace an icon with Lopez? That’s just disrespectful and a sign that the show really is not about contestants anymore or legends in the music industry giving good feedback. But the whole judges panel is just awkward for me, and if I would vote to keep anybody, surprisingly, it would be Keith Urban. The rest are too boring or too aggressive. But I just feel that changing judges for the umpteenth time in the last few years is NOT going to help increase Idol‘s ratings. How about you?

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