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

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.

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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.

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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?