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Shania Twain to guest judge ‘American Idol,’ not Jessica Simpson


Another stop on the “American Idol” audition tour, another celebrity judge filling in for Paula Abdul.

People.com has confirmed that Shania Twain will be the next singing star to join Simon, Randy and Kara on the judges’ panel. She’ll help cover the Chicago round on Aug. 30-31.

<a href=”http://view.picapp.com/default.aspx?term=shania twain&iid=2603560″ target=”_blank”><img src=”http://cdn.picapp.com/ftp/Images/5/5/a/3/e4.JPG?adImageId=2253639&imageId=2603560″ width=”380″ height=”588″  border=”0″ alt=”42nd Annual CMA Awards – Arrivals”/></a><script type=”text/javascript” src=”http://cdn.pis.picapp.com/IamProd/PicAppPIS/JavaScript/PisV4.js”></script>

Twain follows Mary J. Blige, who helped out in Atlanta this week, and Victoria “Posh” Beckham, who pouted with the Boston wanna-bes earlier this month.

So who’s next? Katy Perry is on board at some point in the audition process, but meanwhile, the show’s producers are also searching for a permanent replacement for Paula. (That is, if they’re not secretly in talks to bring Paula back in time for Hollywood week, as some cynics suspect.)

The latest rumor had Jessica Simpson as a contender, with the New York Post’s Page Six claiming that her manager father, Joe, was pushing for the gig.

Simpson’s rep denied the story, and Joe Simpson himself sent out a tweet saying he was in Thailand, writing: “Do the lies ever stop????”

Well, if the story isn’t true – and Joe Simpson doesn’t exactly have a reputation for truth-telling – then Joe should get his tush back to the U.S.

Because given the sorry state of Jess’s career (and love life) at the moment, they should both be happy she’s being mentioned in the same breath as America’s No. 1 TV show…

Posted by Heather Salerno on Tuesday, August 18th, 2009 at 7:42 am |
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Simon staying on ‘American Idol’


“American Idol” may have lost Paula, but the show is wasting no time locking down its meanest, but arguably, most important judge: Simon Cowell.

Simon will continue with the singing competition for at least three more seasons, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

On an earnings call earlier today, the parent company of “AI” co-producer 19 Entertainment confirmed that Simon is in the process of finalizing a deal with FOX to stay with the series until 2012.

Unlike Paula Abdul and Ryan Seacrest, whose contracts expired at the end of last season, Simon had one more year to go on his.

He reportedly decided to renegotiate now for the upcoming season, as well as Seasons 10 and 11. Reports claim that he is expected to earn $45 million under the new pact, up from the $36 million a year that he currently makes.

As host, Seacrest is supposedly set to make $45 million, too, over the next three years. And as everyone in the free world now knows, Paula decided to leave the show last week when she and the show couldn’t agree on those dolla dolla bills. (It’s said she rejected a $5 million-a-year offer, and was seeking double that amount.)

FOX also decided to bring back Kara DioGuardi for next season. And the network brass recently announced that stars like Victoria Beckham and Katy Perry will rotate as guest judges during the upcoming season’s audition process, which is currently underway, until it finds a permanent replacement for Paula. They hope that will happen by the time the show returns to the air early next year.

But what about Randy Jackson? This circus may start all over again when the jovial judge’s contract expires next year.

It that okay with you, dawgs?

(Photo courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Tuesday, August 11th, 2009 at 1:33 pm |
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Kara DioGuardi returns to ‘American Idol’


People magazine is reporting that infamous “American Idol” fourth judge (and occasional bikini model) Kara DioGuardi will be back for the show’s ninth season.

But will there be three or four judges in the next round? There’s still no official word on whether Paula Abdul will be returning.

And something tells me that neither lady is going to be getting anywhere near what Ryan Seacrest will be banking. (He’s getting $45 million over three more years for saying “Seacrest, out.” Insane!)

So, “Idol” fans, will you be glad to see Kara again? Do you want Paula back, too?

(Photo courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Friday, July 31st, 2009 at 11:38 am |
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