by Free Britney at . Comments

The Voice reigning champion Javier Colon has accepted Simon Cowell's idea for the ultimate musical showdown - a battle between TV singing competition winners!

Simon suggested pitting the champs of X Factor, The Voice and American Idol together in a singing smackdown, with the goal of determining who reigns supreme.

Javier took to Twitter to accept Simon's "super final" challenge:

"So @simoncowell recently proposed a face off btw Idol/Xfactor/Voice winners. I really respect the other shows and winners a lot but if U want a battle I'm IN!"

Javier Colon Image

American Idol producer Nigel Lythgoe also responded on Twitter last week, but he was less willing, making a thinly-veiled claim to Idol's superiority:

"@simoncowell suggests the IDOL winner should take on the voice and x-factor winners. The problem is the Idol winner will be a star by then."

Ouch! Idol is really digging in against its critics these days.

With X Factor allowing managed talent to participate this season, and The Voice getting bigger ratings than ever this winter, the ante has been upped.

Will past and future champions step up to the plate?! This show would likely never happen for myriad reasons, but we ask you: Which show is the best?

 

by Hilton Hater at . Comments

While American Idol fans across the country worry about whether or not Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler can really fill the void left by Simon Cowell, there's at least one man who's happy that British producer is gone from the judging table:

Nigel Lythgoe.

AI Crew

Lythgoe, who returns this season to take charge of the Fox smash, says the new edition of Idol will feature contestants Cowell never would have let through.

"We've had some incredible country voices. In truth, Simon would have gotten rid of them straight-away because he wasn't a country fan... What you are definitely going to get this season is an American voice and American music."

Continue Reading...

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There were lots of strong performances among the finalists on American Idol, but the most memorable moment of the night may have come from Ryan Seacrest.

After Simon Cowell called out Michael Lynche for "corny" dance moves, Ryan not only came to the affable singer's defense, he got in Simon's grill in the process.

The normally unflappable judge was taken aback - and scooted his seat back, throwing his hands up and admitting he was very uncomfortable. Point, Seacrest!

Chalk up another memorable exchange in one of Hollywood's ongoing rivalries / friendships. We never quite know what to make of the dynamic between them.

Ryan definitely threw Simon off here, though, which was funny and uncomfortable. Check out the clip below of the two stars almost butting heads ... literally:

by Hilton Hater at . Comments

Simon Cowell would like to get one thing out of the way: He's not engaged to Mezhgan Hussainy.

Personal questions aside, the American Idol spoke to reporters yesterday and addressed reports of who might replace him as a judge next season.

“I think they’ll find somebody who’s got that kind of experience, whether it’s a manager, artist, or like me, an A & R executive,” he said.

What about two of the most prominent names being bantered about: Howard Stern and Perez Hilton?

“I know Howard’s name has been in there for a while, but I’m fairly certain that there hasn’t been an approach at any time for Howard to do the show... He’s played records. He’s a DJ. He obviously wants the job. Good luck to him.”

What about the world's most self-obsessed celebrity gossip blogger? “Perez would be funny. He’s got a good taste in music, he’s a personality — that could work.”

AI Crew

As for Cowell's favorites this season, he won't specify any contestant. But his words make it clear that he's in the corner of female singers such as Crystal Bowersox and Didi Benami.

“There’s definitely a better chance of a girl winning the show. I’d love to find a Taylor Swift, somebody who’s relevant rather than just a contest winner.”

Ouch. Was that a shot at recent winners David Cook and Kris Allen?

by Hilton Hater at . Comments

Last night, American Idol viewers met a pair of rumored semifinalists: Casey James and Haeley Vaughn.

But while we're excited to hear more from them and other singers, the focus of the show will likely return to the judging table next week. That's because Ellen DeGeneres debuts as a panelist on Tuesday night.

Asked about her co-star by Entertainment Tonight, Ellen recently said: "He's actually meaner than I thought. It's hard to listen to him tell people things and me not to go, 'You poor thing!'"

Despite this critique, and despite rumors that she and Cowell are already fighting, an insider says everything is fine between the pair.

Yes, Simon appeared late at a taping last month, but apologized and DeGeneres "accepted it right away and was fine," says the source.

So, can Ellen offer any spoilers about which contestants make it far in Hollywood? No, but she does tease: "We have a wide variety [of talent]... somebody for everybody, I hope."

She's already getting good at this marketing game. Are you excited for her to take part on the show?

by Hilton Hater at . Comments

American Idol viewers haven't seen Ellen DeGeneres on TV yet. But Simon Cowell may have already had enough of her!

The comedian started taping the Hollywood rounds of the show last week and will debut on Fox on February 9. How is she getting along with the most important panelist of all?

“Their relationship started poorly, but now the situation has escalated,” a source told RadarOnline.com.

  • Ellen as a Judge
  • Simon Photograph

The tension stems from Ellen's very first day on set, as reports indicate Simon showed up an hour and a half and DeGeneres was "greatly annoyed" by such tardiness.

“There’s two camps on the show this season,” said a show insider. “It’s a lot more tense than previous seasons. It seems as if Ellen has decided to try to take control since Simon is on his way out and that’s created problems.”

Sounds like it will create great television, as well. Are you excited for Ellen to debut? Do you wanna see Katy Perry take over for Cowell next season?

You can also check out the leaked names of rumored season nine semifinalists. The next American Idol will likely come from this group.

by Hilton Hater at . Comments

Simon Cowell is leaving American Idol after this season.

This news is very sad for those of us who appreciate Simon's sarcasm, wit, honesty and entertainment value as a whole. But it also offers an opportunity for Idol to truly branch out.

Sure, Ellen DeGeneres as a judge (starting February 9) is a departure from the show's typical, music-driven basis for selecting its panelists. However, we're talking about change fans can truly believe in...

... which brings us to our first proposed replacement for Cowell. He, along with many of the options below, might not seem equipped for the job. But hear us out, and then let us know who you wanna see sit in Simon's seat in 2011:

Barack Obama: As someone who once got 66,882,230 votes in a single day, he's the only guy more popular than the show. Or at least better known. Plus, can you imagine the criticism? "Look ... Kris ... You possess a terrific talent, but at the end of the day, Adam possesses the kind of change that can bring the music world together."

Nelson from The Simpsons: Really, how much more analysis do 90 percent of the performances need than a simple: "HA-ha!"

Donald Trump: Every critique of his will be the absolute BEST!

OBAMA, TRUMP, WOODS OR SOMEONE ELSE? WHO SHOULD BE THE NEXT AMERICAN IDOL JUDGE?

Gilbert Arenas. Pros: Will bring hip vibe, comic relief to the panel. Cons: May pull piece on a contestant after a crappy performance, as a "joke" of course.

Tiger Woods: He has a lot of free time these days and knows a lot about young talent. Just keep him away from the female contestants.

Carson Daly: If only he actually existed.

Simon Cow: He'll be moo-ved by the ballads each week and will always udder praise. Oh, wait, sorry, we thought we were writing jokes for Jay Leno.

by Hilton Hater at . Comments

Earlier today, Randy Jackson said he hopes the American Idol focus soon shifts from the judging table to the singing stage.

That may be difficult after today's announcement: Simon Cowell has confirmed that he's leaving the series after this season.

At a gathering of the country's TV critics in California, Cowell said he's bringing his popular UK show The X Factor to the United States in 2011.

“We did talk about me staying on both shows, but when we looked at the practicalities of that, it was impossible,” Cowell said. “In my opinion, it’s like having a good player and a good football team. The two have to be okay together. I believe it’s not my show, but it’s still very close to me... I’m confident [American Idol] will continue to be the No. 1 show. Everyone is committed to keeping it that way.”

Simon Photograph

The X Factor is almost identical to Idol, except that groups are allowed to enter the singing competition and there's no age limit on contestants. Leona Lewis was crowned its champion one season, launching her successful career.

Is there really room for it and Idol to air simultaneously? And, more pressingly, will you even watch American Idol without Simon Cowell as a judge?

 

by Hilton Hater at . Comments

It's official: Ellen DeGeneres is part of the American Idol family.

The comedian was announced as the show's fourth judge, taking over for Paula Abdul, months ago. But she now appears in a series of promotional photos for the competition and there's truly no going back.

Ellen will debut on the panel on February 9.

Prior to that, Idol will feature a number of celebrity guest judges - including Victoria Beckham, Mary J. Blige, Kristin Chenoweth, Neil Patrick Harris, Joe Jonas, Avril Lavigne and Katy Perry - as it narrows its season nine field down to the Hollywood round.

The New Panel

American Idol will begin its search for the next Kris Allen, Adam Lambert or Carrie Underwood is less than a week! It premieres on January 12 and THG will be there every step of the way, posing almost-daily reviews, recaps and videos of contestants.

Won't you join us? For now, check out Ellen and the rest of the cast below:

  • Ellen as a Judge
  • Simon Photograph
  • Randy Jackson Pic
  • Seacrest
  • Ellen Promo Pic

by Hilton Hater at . Comments

We're less than a month away from the premiere of American Idol season nine.

While the major show news over the last few months involved Ellen DeGeneres as the new judge; the latest buzz regarding the competition revolves around the man that truly makes the series what it is: Simon Cowell.

According to Simon's brother Tony, a radio personality with a weekly podcast: “A press statement is being prepared which will confirm what everybody expected: Simon will leave Idol at the end of 2010 to concentrate on bringing the American version of ‘X Factor’ to U.S. TV in 2011.”

If true, that would make this Cowell's final season as a panelist. Would you even watch American Idol if he left?

Simon

Regarding the season itself, Fox announced a few key dates for it this week:

  • January 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, 27; February 2, 3: Nationwide auditions for Hollywood. Rotating guest judges will include Victoria Beckham, Mary J. Blige, Kristin Chenoweth, Neil Patrick Harris, Joe Jonas, Avril Lavigne, Katy Perry, and Shania Twain.
  • February 9: Hollywood rounds. DeGeneres debuts.
  • February 17: 24 semifinalists announced.
  • March 16: 12 finalists announced.

Also of note: there will be no Wild Card round this year, as the controversial addition to last season's Idol gave the judges the power to keep one contestant on even after he/she was voted off by viewers.

Remember: THG is your destination for complete American Idol recaps, videos and commentaries once the season begins!

Simon Cowell Biography

New American Idol Judges Simon Cowell is our favorite American Idol judge. He's sometimes mean, but always honest and entertaining. He also knows how to put Paula... More »
Born
Birthplace
Simon Phillip Cowell
Full Name
Brighton, East Sussex, England

Simon Cowell Quotes

It was a little bit like Chihuahua trying to be a tiger.

Simon Cowell [following David Archuleta's attempt to sing a Chris Brown song]

I’d pack your suitcase.

Simon Cowell [to Jason Castro, after the former sung "I Shot the Sheriff"]
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