Where does American Idol go now after a lackluster season? Back to the beginning of course!
Sources confirm to us that Idol wants to bring back former winners and contestants as judges for season 13. No deals are final, but we hear that original Idol Kelly Clarkson and Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson are on board for next year.
Fox is also chasing runner-ups Clay Aiken and Adam Lambert to fill the final slot, as Idol will go back to a three-judge format after dumping current panelists Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj and Keith Urban. Veteran judge Randy Jackson exclusively revelead his exit to us earlier this month.
One Idol insider tells us that while nothing is final yet, it's "95 percent there." The alum panel will be Fox's attempt to reignite ratings by bringing back Idol faces that the fans care about. "It's Idol stars guiding the next generation" adds one Fox source.
A Fox rep tells us: "We aren't commenting on the judge speculation." FremantleMedia also has no comment on the story.
Vulture first reported the Idol alum initiative.
Would you watch American Idol next season with alums returning as judges?