'American Idol' Randy Jackson Leaving or Fired? Stays Around As 'Mentor'
It has been confirmed that Randy Jackson is no longer a judge on "American Idol." He is voluntarily stepping away from the judge's table and will instead remain on the show as a "mentor."
However, sources close to the show told TMZ that heads of "Idol" are concerned that Jackson is not fit for the role as a mentor, but that they will still keep him along because "he's the glue that helps keep the show together," the site said.
Sources also told them that Nicki Minaj is almost 100 percent confirmed to be Jackson's replacement as a judge. Enstarz previously reported, however, that the decision is not sitting too well with singer Mariah Carey, who is already a confirmed judge for the show's new season. Reportedly, Carey hung up the phone when representatives told her that she would be sitting alongside Minaj as a judge.
On the other hand, many television shows thrive on drama between actors and stars to boost their ratings, so the potential Carey-Minaj conflict might do the show some good, in the eyes of "Idol" executives.
The site also reported that "Idol" is also looking for a fourth judge and that producers want someone for the country music. E! New has included Keith Urban and Enrique Iglesias in the mix of artists rumored to be up for the fourth judge position.
In other "Idol" news, Nigel Lythgoe will return as executive producer for the show, E! confirmed.
Jackson is the last of the original "Idol" judges to leave the show. Both Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell have already stepped away.