Toldja she was leaving… She keeps telling intimates she wants to perform and star in movies. But, seriously, how in demand is yet another 42-year-old singer-actress given the reality of showbiz? The story I posted yesterday said Jennifer Lopez would be leaving Fox‘s American Idol even though she was still in negotiations. Today, The Associated Press quoted Lopez’s spokesman as saying she is leaving Idol. (The rep is Fame Factory celebrity publicist Mark Young.) The latest media speculation about new American Idol judges for Season 12 include 2009 runner-up Adam Lambert, rapper will.i.am, Miley Cyrus, Fergie, and most recently Mariah Carey. (Lambert said: “If Idol wants to talk to me about judging, I’d be more than flattered to have that conversation.”) Katy Perry has revealed she said no to an offer.
As recently as Thursday, Fox execs told Deadline that JLo was still in negotiations: “It’s complicated and fluid. It might get resolved very quickly or may drag on for another few weeks. All the usual reasons; money, schedules, desire to continue, and overall makeup of the judges panel.” Now JLo is the second judge in two days to say she’s leaving American Idol: Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler announced his departure Thursday. This morning Lopez repeated to Idol host Ryan Seacrest on his radio show almost exactly what she told The Today Show the day before: “I honestly feel like the time has come that I have to get back to doing the other things that I do that I’ve put kind of on hold.” Clearly JLo had a script to memorize, milking her “maybe-I-am-leaving” moment as yet another publicity opportunity — this time to promote her voicing role in Ice Age 4 opening today.
No problem, her too-long 15 minutes of fame will be ending soon. Despite her presence or because of it, Idol registered its lowest-rated finale ever last spring. And immediately after News Corp COO Chase Carey told Wall Street analysts that “our challenge for next year is to put some fresh energy in” American Idol after “we probably didn’t do enough this year”. In terms of changes, Fox entertainment president Kevin Reilly has promised “some creative tweaking” heading into next season after the show’s ratings “dropped more than anticipated” this cycle as “space got crowded”.