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Mariah Carey & Nicki Minaj's 'American Idol' Casting Was a 'Major Failing,' Says Nigel Lythgoe

Mariah Carey & Nicki Minaj's 'American Idol' Casting Was a 'Major Failing,' Says Nigel Lythgoe

American Idol‘s former producer Nigel Lythgoe is speaking out about the show’s cancellation and why he thinks hiring Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj was a mistake.

“It’s the right thing to do,” he told Billboard. “I’m a huge fan of boxing, and it’s like when you’re watching a real heavyweight boxer getting to the end of their career, and all these young whippersnappers are coming up: You’ve got to know when to retire.”

Nigel says that the show was key for Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler‘s careers, but not for the other two.

Mariah and Nicki was just crazy, and then it really started becoming about the judges and took away from the contestants altogether,” he said. “I think that was a major failing on the part of casting to have those two together. On their own, either one may have been successful.”

WHAT DID YOU THINK of Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj as judges?

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  • granky161

    This show has been over the hill for years. Should have ended before they brought Mariah and Nicki along.

  • Cptcat

    I lost interest when Paula & Simon left. Paula was fun. I never liked Ryan Seacrest but adding Ellen de generous was really wrong.

    Would have tuned back in for Mariah but I didn’t think Nikki Minaj was experienced enough to judge talent. Mariah has been in the biz for how long? How many hits does she have? She was more than qualified to judge the show, Nikki ruined it and so did Jlo.

  • Cruizin1960

    It was an epic fail and the beginning of the end. I think that Harry helped save last season and meshed well with Keith. Could have done without JLo. Lost interest in this season with all of the drastic changes. They should have stuck to what worked and stopped trying to be the voice.

  • plez

    Jlo has been using it as her personal fashion show and to promote herself rather than promoting the contestants.

  • Amie

    Nothing it wouldn’t happen in the first they hired Nicki Minaj on the show behind Mariah Carey’s back.It shouldn’t been 3 panel.Not 4.Im glad that is about to be over.

  • duh!

    Nope…jlo sucked too…once Paula Abdul left….it was all shit

  • Martin Dr

    Regardless of who the judges were, the show was already going down the hill. The people are tired of it. Theres nothing new.

  • Brandon

    I lost interest after season 3. The show never evolved into anything after Simon and Paula left. Mariah and Nicki’s feud was the most exciting think to happen since Kelly Clarkson won the first show. Don’t use them as scapegoats. The truth is that no one cares about the contestants; Simon and Paula carried the show the most in the early years. They had a clever chemistry, and Simon is an a$$hole. People loved it for them; sure Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood were awesome. Jennifer Hudson is OK. But, the show didn’t stand a chance once the law of diminishing marginal utility took hold.

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  • Daniel Tony Wynn

    I think mariah would have been fine without the cast of nicki because she would have brouggt more to the table she has experience 18 number ones and seeing her mentoring to the next upcoming artists would have been a big pivotal moment on her career.

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