Report: Randy Jackson Not Leaving American Idol, In Talks to Replace Jimmy Iovine as Mentor

Get More: American Idol, News

Randy Jackson blogYo, check it out: A familiar face may be returning to American Idol before he ever really left.

Departing judge Randy Jackson is in talks to stick with the long-running Fox competition series for its revamped Season 13 — but now as an in-house mentor, our sister site Deadline reports. Jackson would thus replace music producer Jimmy Iovine, who is reportedly leaving Idol after three seasons of advising contestants.

RELATED | American Idol: 10 Bold, Completely Original, Randy Jackson-Free Fixes to Revive Season 13

Jackson first announced his Idol departure in May. His new position is just one of several changes for the show’s upcoming run. Keith Urban will once again serve as a judge, but he will be joined by a new panel following Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj’s exits.

RELATED | American Idol Live! 2013 Concert Review: Highs, Lows and Headscratchers from Newark, N.J.!

At the Television Critics Assoc. press tour earlier this month, Fox president Kevin Reilly said “there have been discussions” with Season 10/11 judge Jennifer Lopez for a return engagement. Mega-music producer Dr. Luke is reportedly a contender to join the dais as well.

Behind the scenes, longtime executive producers Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick were ousted in June, while News Corp. TV executive David Hill replaced Fox’s reality-TV vet Mike Darnell in the role of overseeing Idol, which returns midseason.

Would you like to see Randy stay on, as the “new” Jimmy Iovine?

Comments (76)

  • For the love of God, you have GOT to be kidding. What will it take for this franchise to see that Randy Jackson is not longer a relevant entity here? And that most people have no desire to see or hear from him anymore on Idol. Although, if they’re looking for a way to continue to shut down the whole Idol enterprise, then by all means, carry on with plans like this. Carry on.

    Comment by PepperJo – August 22, 2013 05:09 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I love everything you said. I could not have said it better!

      Comment by elr – August 22, 2013 06:33 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I’m actually happy to hear this news. I stopped watching Idol after season 10 and I really didn’t want to get pulled back into watching it again. Knowing that J-Ho and RandyJackass are going to be on the show next season guarantees that I won’t be tuning in again!

        Comment by Mandy – August 22, 2013 08:45 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Amen!

      Comment by Mik – August 22, 2013 06:55 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Double Amen!! I’m all for calling this the last season…if they go away for a few years they could come back and do a Summer AI and that’d be fine. I think it’s time to let go to this, and go out while they still have credibility with the masses :)

        Comment by Belle – August 22, 2013 08:08 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • The “credibility” they have is mostly because Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood dropped in their laps. There have been a handful of good singers/performers in recent years (such as Candice), but AI hasn’t been a hot or interesting show since season five.

          Comment by MC – August 29, 2013 06:13 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Completely agree. Randy Jackson should have left years ago and I think he will probably be even worse at mentoring than he was at judging.

      Comment by George – August 22, 2013 09:07 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I agree 1000%. These people are delusional.

      Comment by stevenjaba – August 22, 2013 09:56 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Look Randy has been on the panel for 12 years so he knows a thing or two about the Idol Machine. So him as a mentor makes a lot of sense. He’s better than iovine.

      Comment by Sage – August 22, 2013 11:20 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • That’s hysterical. Really, really funny. Wow, LMAO.

        Comment by Cali Girl – August 26, 2013 10:34 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • He must have blackmail on somebody….

      Comment by Kelly – August 22, 2013 02:01 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • You read my mind.

        Comment by Justin – August 22, 2013 02:34 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Amen my Brotha

      Comment by Shaun – April 9, 2014 10:05 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • “My advice to you is: you really gotta step it up, dawg.”

    Comment by FatherOctavian – August 22, 2013 05:11 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • “I spoke to my girl Mariah the other day…”

      Comment by Josh – August 22, 2013 07:41 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Idol is obviously not “in it to win it”

      Comment by Dayrah – September 13, 2013 07:55 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Jimmy was the ONLY reason to watch Idol the last three years…terrible

    Comment by Chris – August 22, 2013 05:14 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Worst idea ever. Jimmy was the lone source for honest (and negative) feedback, how can they replace him with someone who’s feedback is one of 5 catchphrases.

    Comment by Luther – August 22, 2013 05:16 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • The downside of Jimmy was his advice always came when watching the playback off the show and reporting it the next day. So obviously sometimes it was honest, but it was always after the show aired so it wasn’t in the moment and likely knowing the results of the vote. Maybe Randy will be more honest in this role… And more timely.

      Comment by Stacey – August 22, 2013 06:11 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • The Peter Principle on steroids. Brings to mind Jonathan Edwards’ lyric “He can’t even run his own life, I’ll be damned if he’ll run mine”.

    Comment by JCK – August 22, 2013 05:24 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I do not like Jimmy, too controlling, instead of mentoring he dictates, HOWEVER, I’d still rather have him than Randy. I don’t know why I care since with the old re-tread, JLo returning, I won’t watch. Suicide by stupidity is AI new motto.

    Comment by Dakota – August 22, 2013 05:50 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Hated Jimmy. It was like his opinion carried more weight than the judges. Awkward to have Jimmy trash a contestant JUST BEFORE they were about to perform. Randy is a good fit and will come off as less arrogant than Iovine.

    Comment by qj201 – August 22, 2013 06:01 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • LOL! “The new, fresh and revamped Idol” (except remember the judge from 2 years ago, ya, she’s coming back and Gotcha! Randy didn’t really leave. Oh and Keith is coming back, so……)

    Comment by Pat H (@PattiHum) – August 22, 2013 06:09 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Exactly its like everything old is new again this isn’t fresh this is just rehashed hackery.

      Comment by Katy – August 22, 2013 06:16 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Exactly! The new peeps in charge are obviously just as clueless as the old peeps in charge!

        Comment by Mandy – August 22, 2013 08:47 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Haha yes! My sentiments exactly!

      Comment by Aprilcot – August 22, 2013 07:21 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • They may as well bring back Brian Dunkleman.

      Comment by Dave – August 22, 2013 11:30 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I will hope for the best. Randy Jackson, for you, for me, does have a history in the music business, so he might offer insight as a mentor. Might. Ah, who am I kidding?

    What would be better would be both of them — Jimmy and Randy, a la Shana Alexander and James J Kilpatrick, picking apart performances. I mean, if they HAVE to have Randy there, they could dilute him with Jimmy :)

    Comment by Scott – August 22, 2013 06:16 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This upcoming season is sounding worse and worse the more I hear. I may just skip the whole thing.

    Comment by Bobbi – August 22, 2013 06:25 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Stop pushing who you want to win and let it really be about who America wants to win. Bring in Harry Connick Jr. and let him mentor. He gave about the best advice of any of the mentors. And PLEASE this year give them a choice of better songs. They were so boring last year for the most part that I had to struggle to continue watching. The only reason I did was because one of the contestants was someone I knew. It was so apparent what was going on with getting rid of all the guys one after another it was idiotic. Please let it play out. Glad Keith is returning. He was the only judge worth a hoot last year.

    Comment by Kat – August 22, 2013 06:26 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Limit the voting to 10x per device, so the winner is the ACTUAL winner.

      Comment by JCK – August 22, 2013 06:35 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I almost thought about returning to watch AI this year with new judges and hopefully a re-vamped show but it appears now that they are just moving re-treads around and will probably keep the same boring, out-of-touch theme nights so I am out.

    Comment by Atlanta Girl – August 22, 2013 06:41 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Well, thank g-d I-o-vine is leaving. Unfortunately, they’re replacing him with someone worse. Cancel the show already.

    Comment by Bob – August 22, 2013 06:41 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I think Slezak didn’t report this story because he’s too busy crying in a corner somewhere… Or Hulk-smashing some office furniture. Honestly, isn’t that what we all want to do right about now?

    Comment by Volcfom – August 22, 2013 06:41 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I was just going to comment that I’m assuming Slezak isn’t reporting on this because his head just exploded

      Comment by Emma – August 22, 2013 06:50 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • LOL! I was thinking the same thing!

        Comment by PFitzDC – August 22, 2013 08:09 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I can absolutely see him Hulk-smashing his office! Hulk, mad! :)

      Comment by Denice – August 22, 2013 07:55 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • When I first heard the news, I immediately thought of the anguish Slezak must be feeling. This is a Sisyphean-level torture of a good man.

      Comment by Kate M. – August 22, 2013 08:36 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I know it’s schadenfreude, but I still want to see Slezak’s reaction. I’m so disgusted at this show, I want someone else to publicly admit to being just as disgusted!

        Comment by Tiff – August 22, 2013 08:50 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • The absurdity that is American Idol. . just keeps piling up and this latest Randy news is at the top of the heap.

    Comment by Baubles – August 22, 2013 06:41 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Oh hum, Idol gets less and less appealing everyday. I can not believe they are bringing Randy in as mentor and Jimmy Lovine is leaving. He was the only true voice on idol. Also didn’t he have something to do with the recording contracts?
    I will watch Idol when it starts and if I see it go anywhere near what it did last season I am done with Idol for good. Last year was a total waste of time. I could care less about any of the contestants coming from that season and will not buy any of their music. Once the season was over they were forgotten to me. Not like the season before where I still play Philip’s music everyday. Idol is fast becoming a skeleton of the show it use to be. So sad.

    Comment by MB – August 22, 2013 06:50 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Blech. I think I’m out for the season; it portends to be extraordinarily boring.

    Comment by Yo – August 22, 2013 07:01 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • NO! He just needs to swan off and be gone! Adam Lambert would be the best new judge/mentor. Someone who knows how to made a song his own. But enough of Yo Dog!

    Comment by – August 22, 2013 07:13 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • GET OVER IT ADAM IS NOT PICKED. Must you bring him into every post.

      Comment by MyGod – August 22, 2013 08:19 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Wow. Did not see this coming. I really think Idol needs a clean break from its past to give it a fresh start. Now they bring back Randy and JLo? I thought they were going to blow up this show and try some new things? Is Paula Abdul available???

    Comment by rmd1064 – August 22, 2013 07:34 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • So much for an all new idol…much of the same!

    Comment by Chris – August 22, 2013 08:00 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • No, no, no, no, NO!!!!
    Who is Randy Jackson sleeping with or have blackmail info on at Fox? There is simply no other reason for anyone to think that he continues to be an asset to this franchise at this critical juncture in its history.

    Comment by PFitzDC – August 22, 2013 08:11 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Who even cares anymore? This show needs to be cancelled.

    Comment by Alex – August 22, 2013 08:11 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I’m okay with this! Randy is good in small doses, and jimmy was just so fake. He seemed like he was reading his critiques off of a cue card.

    Comment by Brandy – August 22, 2013 08:13 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I am in the minority but it doesn’t bother me that Randy is coming back. I am one of the few that did not like Jimmy. Since he came on the contestants seem to lack ingenuity and there was no Billy Jean or Heartless moments. I hope Randy is honest with the contestants and actually he does have some good insights, unfortunately as a judge he did not deliver them well. I do hope they have other mentors beside Randy maybe even bringing back some previous contestants to mentor and perform. I am glad Keith is back, not to thrill with Jlo but can live with it, but the third judge needs to be an music insider to give good constructive critiques. The secret to a successful year it to pick a good variety of contestants and let them be themselves. STOP manipulating and let the audience choose. NO PRODUCTION until further in the show, maybe top 5. Time will tell.

    Comment by Mary – August 22, 2013 08:17 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I am in the minority with you Mary. The thing is after firing everybody. Idol needs, at least even in small dose, someone that knows how the process works. Cause whether you like it or not it’s not easy to be successful at anything. So having someone that was there when people like Carrie, Kelly, Adam were picked can be very helpful. Idol went down but it still around the same number rating wise as The Voice. Randy can be grating sometimes but he is experienced. Idol still needs him

      Comment by Nephtalia – August 22, 2013 10:53 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Oh God no. Just when we thought we were safe…….

    Comment by RD – August 22, 2013 08:17 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Gee. Randy Jackson as “mentor”, Keith Urban and J-Lo returning as judges…. way NOT to change the show, AI! Yet another season I won’t be turning in for… kind of a bummer. I was hoping to see real change.

    Comment by allie – August 22, 2013 08:22 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Take Keith out of the equation. Keep the rest.

      Comment by lll – August 22, 2013 08:38 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Worst idea ever Jimmy was great. Randy not so much

    Comment by Ig – August 22, 2013 08:30 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • He really is IN IT TO WIN IT

    Comment by BARF – August 22, 2013 08:38 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • NOOOO!!!
    So pathetic that they say they want to make big changes and then they talk of bringing back JLo who was about as worthless as they come and now they may keep Randy around? STUPID!

    Comment by CAM – August 22, 2013 09:06 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • If both Randy and Jennifer come back, I am not watching this season, end of story. Why do they not understand how much the audience does not like them? Take their salary and use it to buy more song rights instead. This show is never as exciting as when a contestant does something new and exciting. I have never looked forward to the judges. They are wasting their money and have been for years – when will they get it?

    Comment by Rebecca Parker – August 22, 2013 09:40 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Am I the only one that misses Simon?

    Comment by Randi – August 22, 2013 10:41 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • The show’s been dead to me for years. I hate the way they treat some of their winners. Their shallow opinion of who they support is appalling to me. I hate that they don’t support contestants unless they either have made it big ala Jennifer Hudson or now Taylor Hicks who is a big Vegas star. Idol never supported them until they “deemed” both very talented people, support worthy. Or they support singers that they prefer and wanted to have won. So for them to get Randy back and JLo…is to me a big joke. I think Jimmy Iovine, although he may not have given advice that I agreed with (I’m not a professional, I just have opinions) I feel did extremely well promoting singers who might not ever make it in this world of music had he not.

    Maybe Iovine just got tired of supporting singers he didn’t like so he’s letting Randy take over.

    Comment by Virginia B. – August 22, 2013 11:06 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • well heck now I know I won’t be watching between Randy’s return and JoLo’s pee hew!

    Comment by libby – August 22, 2013 11:13 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss”. I didn’t like Jimmy, but I don’t think Randy would be any improvement. It seems to me that he quit Idol, found out that he’s no longer relevant in the music scene, and then came back to Idol, begging the new producers for some job….any job….just give me a paycheck! At least I’m not hearing any more about Will I Am as a judge. Pick from Adam Lambert, Neil Patrick Harris, Harry Connick, Jr., and/or Shania Twain. Keeping Keith is fine. Obviously, like Randy, J. Lo found out that nobody’s terribly interested in her anymore, either. Don’t keep this show as a home for irrelevant, unwanted musicians. Make it fresh and less predictable, like it used to be back in the days of Carrie Underwood, the two Davids, and Kradison. I still watch just because I LOVE music and singing. But I’ve been able to foretell the winners from week to week pretty accurately the last few seasons. Oh, yes…..LIMIT THE VOTE PER DEVICE TO 10X OR LESS!!!!! I’ve been screaming that from the rooftops for years.

    Comment by CAS – August 22, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • They just pounded the final nail into the coffin with this announcement. This show is dead.

    Comment by Joe – August 22, 2013 11:29 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Randy, Jennifer and no doubt the same tired songs and unlimited voting? They understand NOTHING. I’m finally done with American Idol.

    Comment by Blazing – August 22, 2013 12:26 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Noooooooo! How stupid are the producers? They must live on another planet, because they are so out of touch with reality. It took all these years to get rid of the ‘dawg’. Who in their right mind wants to ever see him again! Not me or my family.

    Comment by amadeline – August 22, 2013 01:46 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Ewww

    Comment by Princess Adora – August 22, 2013 02:39 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Can someone let them know that revamp and retread are not the same thing?

    Comment by Michelle – August 22, 2013 03:26 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • IDK who is running things over at Idol, but they are clueless. Goodbye Idol!

    Comment by Name That Tune – August 22, 2013 03:44 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I’m glad I don’t watch that show anymore.

    Comment by Bobby – August 22, 2013 04:14 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This show really is going to the “dogs”, First money money Jennifer, now Randy J who can’t string together an intelligent sentence, so very sad

    Comment by mary kay farmer – August 22, 2013 06:45 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Seriously? Please. Why can’t he just leave and stay gone already? I’m tired of being so stoked he’s finally leaving and then him turning around saying eh maybe I’m not entirely done with this show. Just the worst. He’s the Howie Mandel of American Idol – irrelevant.

    Comment by Sara – August 22, 2013 07:58 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Nooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Comment by Juan – August 23, 2013 07:11 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • GTFO

    Comment by everyone – August 23, 2013 02:46 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Why oh why is this show still on? If there is a God this would be the final season

    Comment by ejknight – August 24, 2013 04:12 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I MY GOD. Randy Jackson as a mentor? How frickin annoying is it to NOW have Randy in the right hand side ( bottom corner ) of the TV screen before each contestant??? Its like he loved to just hear homself talk!! The other guy had great input! JUST LISTENING TO RANDY RAMBLE…RAMBLE…WITH NOTHING OF USE TO SAY !!

    Comment by Tim Hintz – February 26, 2014 09:22 PM PDT  Reply To This Post

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