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Ryan Seacrest says 'American Idol' judges will be announced very shortly

September 14, 2010 |  2:04 pm


Ryan Seacrest broke "American Idol" news Tuesday while speaking to Ellen DeGeneres on his KIIS-FM morning show.

He said that he is leaving Los Angeles on Sept. 25 or Sept. 26 with "Idol's" new judges to find the contestants that will compete in Hollywood next year for slots on the live shows. (The cattle call auditions end in Los Angeles on Sept. 22).

We know this normally wouldn't qualify as newsworthy, but Fox continues to keep all "Idol" matters a secret, including when it plans to announce the new judges. And, yes, we are aware that by the time we learn officially that Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler are joining Randy Jackson at the judges' table, the announcement will qualify as the most anticlimactic news of the year.

Unless, of course, the TV media have been wrong for two months.

Seacrest didn't discuss who his travel companions would be. Instead, he talked to DeGeneres about why she left the show after just one season of judging.


"It was fun, and I love the moments that we had," she said. "But it was a really hard thing for me to do for many reasons. I just think that these kids are really taking it so seriously, and for me to make a joke every single time when, really, all they're waiting for is constructive criticism. Not true, honest criticism. They want to be praised. And I found it really difficult to watch them have their dreams shattered on national television. ... And I couldn't make a joke every time. If I made a joke that was not directed at them ... that was fun for me. It was just hard. I didn't want to walk that line."

Seacrest asked her when she knew the show was not the right fit for her.

"The first day was a tough day because it was just a reality check for me to, go, 'Oh wow, this is a whole different machine over here,'" she replied. "And I learned the very first day that Simon [Cowell] quit. And I thought, 'How does this work now?' Because I thought he was there for a while, and I thought we were going to play around and have fun because his persona is one way and mine is another so we were going to play with that. And we never really got to do that. And it was just a whole different machine over there. My show is run in a very singular way, and it's my show. And I went over there, and there were a lot of different components. And like I said, it was really hard. This is not just television. These kids, they really are thinking their lives are going to change right now and my words are going to matter and I was like, 'Oh, this is hard.'"

--Maria Elena Fernandez

Photo: Ryan Seacrest at the Stand Up to Cancer event in Los Angeles on Friday. Credit: Kevin Mazur / Getty Images


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