Ellen DeGeneres is the new full-time judge on “American Idol.” The TV talk show host announced the news during a taping of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” on Wednesday that she is the new “Idol” judge, filling a seat left vacant by Paula Abdul, who chose not to return to the show last month.
“I have a big announcement to make. No one knows this. I just finally got the OK… just moments ago to announce this to you today… I am going to be the new judge on ‘American Idol,'” Ellen told her audience on Wednesday afternoon, for her show which will air on Thursday.
Although Ellen is known for being one of the funniest ladies on television, the news was no joke, as the announcement was confirmed by a rep for FOX.
“I could not be more excited to have Ellen join the ‘American Idol’ family,” Simon Fuller, the show’s creator and executive producer, said in a statement. “Ellen has been a fan of the show for many years, and her love of music and understanding of the American public will bring a unique human touch to our judging panel. I can’t wait for this next season to begin.”
However, Ellen will remain the host of her talk show, she promised her audience. “I’m not leaving here. Don’t worry about that. I’m going to have a day job and a night job,” she said. “The times we’re living in we’re all doing that.” Ellen called her additional job “exciting” and explained that her judging credentials are accentuated by the fact she has watched the show – which begins its ninth season in January – since it began on FOX.