‘American Idol’ Releases First Image Of New Judges

Hours after the official American Idol announcement came down the network’s pipeline, FOX released an image featuring this season’s new additions, according to Deadline. Fans of Mariah Carey, Keith Urban, and Nicki Minaj will finally get to see their heroes sitting at the famous American Idol judge’s table. The image reportedly showcases their seating arrangement, with Carey positioned to give her critique first. Like it or not, these are the people you’ll be staring at this season.

Sunday morning, FOX announced that Nicki Minaj and country music star Keith Urban would be joining Mariah Carey and returning judge Randy Jackson on this season’s American Idol. Rumors have been circulating for months as to who, precisely, would join Carey at the table. Although Urban and Minaj’s participation has been hinted at for weeks, Jackson’s return was apparently up in the air until the 11th hour.

For a while, it appeared that singer Enrique Iglesias would appear on the talent competition as the fourth judge. Jackson, meanwhile, would assume the role of a mentor. However, negotiations with Iglesias fell through at the last minute, allowing Jackson to return as a judge for at least one more season.

Mike Darnell — president of Alternative Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company — gushed about this year’s judges in the company’s official press release:

“I am thrilled about this year’s judges’ panel! We’ve got global icon Mariah Carey and IDOL’s heart and soul Randy Jackson, who will be joined by Nicki Minaj and Keith Urban. Nicki’s an unbelievably captivating international phenomenon who has made an indelible mark on rap and pop. And Keith is another great addition to IDOL — he’s one of the biggest stars in country music and I know that our fans and contestants will fall in love with him. With an unparalleled star like Mariah, fan-favorite Randy, chart-toppers like Nicki and Keith and our incomparable host Ryan, we’ve put together one of the most exciting judging panels around.”

Do you think Nicki Minaj, Keith Urban, and Mariah Carey are good choices for American Idol? The first image, complete and uncropped, resides below.

American Idol First Official Image