American Idol Upheaval: Ellen DeGeneres and Kara DioGuardi Out, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler In?

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American Idol is apparently cleaning house.

Talk of who will fill Simon Cowell's vacant seat on the hit show's panel now shifts to who will replace the other two departing judges: Ellen DeGeneres and Kara DioGuardi will not be returning next season either, according to reports.

DeGeneres, who joined the show in its ninth season earlier this year, confirmed in a statement that she told Fox it "didn’t feel like the right fit for me.”

“I told them I wouldn’t leave them in a bind and would hold off until they were able to figure out where they wanted to take the panel next," she said. "It was a difficult decision to make, but my work schedule became more than I bargained for.”

The class act added: “I loved the experience working on Idol, am very grateful for the year I had, am a huge fan of the show and will continue to be.”

In the same statement, American Idol creator and executive producer Simon Fuller says, “I loved Ellen’s passion for the artists and her nurturing skills. She brought honesty and optimism to our judging panel and I will miss her greatly."

AI Crew

Next year's American Idol roster will look a lot different.

But here's where it gets interesting: TMZ reports that Kara DioGuardi has been fired from the program, which will return to a three-judge format.

Fox has not acknowledged Kara's departure in a statement, but it appears it's all but official. That leaves Randy Jackson as the last man standing.

The show will reportedly be going back to a three-judge panel of Randy and a couple of high-profile newcomers: Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler.

This so-called "nuclear option" of blowing up nearly the entire panel has been kicked around for months, but nevertheless comes as a surprise.

Stars ranging from Harry Connick, Jr., to Bret Michaels, Chris Isaak and even Jessica Simpson have been rumored to be negotiating for the job.

Looks like J. Lo and the Aerosmith frontman won out.

The only way Kara could be asked back would be if the Lopez deal fell apart, but TMZ's sources claim it is already a done deal. Crazy stuff!

What do you think of the new panel? With Simon gone, will a Randy-Steven-J.Lo tandem usher in stronger ratings in Season 10?


Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly posed a suggestion last week how about just edinng the show? With the lackluster season that just finished, I'm not totally opposed to this idea. I know Fox would probably never even consider it given how big a cash cow AI seems to be but as a viewer, the series has just deteriorated season after season in the past 3 years. With Simon gone, who cares, really?!


it's over for American Idol might as well ditch it and start with something else and //so you think you can dance is not classier - idol has been ok the best part is the bloopers and those who audition and can't sing - need to have a show like that more like americas funniest video but singing / maybe fsv funniest singing videos - hay hollywood there's a new show for you // but brett michels would be great as a judge


JLO as a judge on Idol? kind of a step down for her; I could more see her as a judge on So You Think You Can Dance as it is a classier show. Really, Jennifer, I love you but it's not enough to make me watch Idull again. Face it; the show has reached its zenith; go out in semi-glory before it's too late.


I'm thrilled that J. Lo will be one of the judges. She's funny and will lend humor to the show, knows her music and she's gorgeous!!! I have not been watching AI because of Adam Lambert - to me he was the ultimate Idol and really rallied for him. Still keeping up with him as he becomes more and more famous here and in other countries. But now that Jennifer Lopez will be one of the judges I'll probably start watching it again just to see her.


Would love to see Bret Michaels...he has the knowledge, the personality, and the good looks to nmake me watch.Another guy is Steve perry of Journey.He really knows his stuff too and his fans would love to see him anywhere.I like Jo Lo but not a s a judge please.They should not have gotten rid of Kara.Ellen who is one of the funniest women on the planet and has a great love of music was not hard hearted enough for this show.Having said all that I think idol has run it's course....without Simon it is doomed Love him or hate him,i'll be bored without him on no matter how good the talent is.Who has Simon ever said should replace him?i'm so curious!!!!


wont watch idol so stupid some of the people they audition


I like Kara so I am sad she is gone. She had the songwriter background. I never thought Ellen had any credibility on the show. They need another producer to fill Simon's position. I probably will not watch the show much after this new panel of judges take over. The last 2 seasons have been very weak anyway


You're joking, right? Steven Tyler is going to be on a mediocre at best show? So the rumours that he isn't going to sing with Aerosmith are because he wants to be an Idol judge? Right. Can't wait...


Either way, with Simon gone I think the show's ratings will go down. No matter who else will take the judges' place. I think Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler are good picks because they know a lot about music and have been in the music industry for so long. Ellen was nice and funny but, you gotta admit, her place is on the Ellen show (which I like haha). She doesn't strike me as someone who knows a lot about music... she probably just did it because it meant more money and she was interested in it. I knew Ellen wouldn't last on the show, even though I like her. And Kara... idk I'm surprised she's gone, but not many people liked her. I'll still watch the show though - gotta love Randy! I love American Idol, I'll never sop loving it. I'll also be watching X-Factor :D


They jumped the shark.

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American Idol Quotes

Brooke White's tears come from the authentic, good soul that she is. Her heart was breaking because she was overwhelmed with the experience she had with the show and the gift that it brought.

Paula Abdul [after Brooke White was eliminated on season seven]

I read some of this online this morning and just for the record, the rumors — they’re not true. She’s part of our family and we love her.

Ryan Seacrest [on rumor of Paula Abdul being drunk on the show]