The rumor mill won't stop grinding about who will be sitting with Mariah Carey at the judges' table when American Idol returns this January for season 12. The Hollywood Reporter says the latest rumors call for not three but four judges, of disparate musical genres, but one of them may present a problem for Fox.
The Hollywood Reporter quotes "a source with close ties to the show" as claiming that pop-rap superstar Nicki Minaj is the #1 pick for a seat on American Idol judges' panel, but there's an issue with her endorsements. To wit, Nicki has a deal with Pepsi, while Idol, as most viewers know, is very noticeably sponsored by Coke.
But if that can be worked out, sources tell THR that if Fox has its way, Nicki will be on the panel, along with Mariah, who has worked with Nicki in the past, as well as a country star and a Latin artist. As of now, an insider says that Keith Urban is the #1 choice for the country star, while Enrique Iglesias -- currenty on tour with exiting judge Jennifer Lopez -- as the leading candidate for the Latin artist.
So where does this leave Randy Jackson? THR says it has learned that he may replace Jimmy Iovine as the show's "mentor," but that he'll mostly hang around in some capacity as a "comfort blanket" for Mariah, who he manages.
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