Nigel Lythgoe Back on “American Idol”

Nigel Lythgoe has confirmed that he is returning to “American Idol” as executive producer after an absence of two years, and if he would have his way, another person is sure to be back.

Lythgoe said that there are several things he wants done for Season 10 of “American Idol,” but on top of his list, if it is still possible, is to bring back Paula Abdul as judge. Abdul, who left the show before its ninth season, recently signed on to CBS’ new dance show called “Got to Dance,” where she would serve as judge, mentor, and executive producer. “I still love Paula,” Lythgoe said. “She’s signed to CBS, probably exclusively, but I’d recommend we have her in a heartbeat.”

In an interview with Variety, Lythgoe appeared to have assured the return of Randy Jackson, whom he described as the “barnacle” of “Idol” while also giving his stamp of approval to Jennifer Lopez or Steven Tyler of Aerosmith if ever they are picked as the show’s new judges in lieu of Simon Cowell and Ellen DeGeneres.

“They can knock her film career, but (audiences) know she’s a good actress…If she joins, I’m happy,” Lythgoe said of Lopez. As for Tyler, “Nasty Nigel” has this to say: “He has come through that whole rock ‘n’ roll circus. Why wouldn’t you want a legend there? You never know what he’s going to say. That, as a TV producer, you’re interested in.”