Victoria Beckham to Replace Paula Abdul On 'Idol'
Former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham is to serve as a guest judge on hit U.S. television show "American Idol" following the departure of Paula Abdul, network executives said Thursday.
Pop star Beckham would join the panel of judges along with singer-songwriter Katy Perry during the audition phase of the show, the Fox Broadcasting production that is the highest-rating program on U.S. television.
Other pop stars would join the four member panel, Fox Broadcasting Entertainment chairman Peter Rice said, without identifying them.
"Between now and January we'll come up with a more permanent solution," Rice told journalists. Guest judges would serve alongside regulars Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi, he said.
Rice said the departure of Abdul, confirmed on Tuesday as the show prepared for its ninth season, would bring a "different dynamic" to the programme.
"There will be a different element, a different energy," Rice said, revealing that Abdul had been offered an improved contract after a previous agreement which expired in May.
"We have been talking to her for most of the season," Rice said. "We very much wanted her to return. In the past few weeks, the negotiations have come to a conclusion.
"We made an offer that we feel was very fair to Paula. It was a substantial raise on the money she's been paid in the past and Paula has decided not return. It is something that was not our choice."
"American Idol" was exported to the United States from Britain in 2002, rapidly establishing itself as the most watched show on US television and a pop-culture phenomenon.
The program aims to unearth the next big singing talent and past contestants such as Carrie Underwood and Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Hudson have gone on to forge successful careers in the entertainment industry.
Abdul meanwhile is being tipped to resurface as a judge on another U.S. television hit "So You Think You Can Dance."
"I don't know anyone who has the experience she has -- dancer, performer, choreographer and judge," the show's executive producer Nigel Lythgoe said.
"I have been trying to get her since season one."