Ellen DeGeneres out as “American Idol” judge!
Ellen DeGeneres has announced that she is leaving American Idol after just one season as a judge.
The popular singing competition, which also lost acerbic judge Simon Cowell at the end of last season, is suffering from declining ratings and some big changes are expected on the show.
Ellen is leaving despite a five year contract.
“A couple months ago, I let FOX and the American Idol producers know that this didn’t feel like the right fit for me,” she said in a statement. “I told them I wouldn’t leave them in a bind and that I would hold off on doing anything until they were able to figure out where they wanted to take the panel next. It was a difficult decision to make, but my work schedule became more than I bargained for.”
The Emmy winning star remains the host of her popular daily syndicated talk show. As the fourth judge replacing Paula Abdul, she never seemed to find her footing on the show.
“I … realized this season that while I love discovering, supporting and nurturing young talent, it was hard for me to judge people and sometimes hurt their feelings. I loved the experience working on Idol and I am very grateful for the year I had, I am a huge fan of the show and will continue to be.”
In the same statement, Idol creator and executive producer Simon Fuller said, “I loved Ellen’s passion for the artists and her nurturing skills. She brought honesty and optimism to our judging panel and I will miss her greatly.”
Peter Rice, the FOX entertainment chairman, said: “We love Ellen and understand and support her decision to bow out of Idol. We were fortunate to receive the humor, energy and love for talent that she brought to the show.”