They came, they saw and they totally didn’t conk. Prince William and Duchess Kate were in L.A for the weekend and amidst their whirl of activities they attended the BAFTA ‘Brits to Watch’ Awards at the Belasco Theatre. Did the Duchess shut it down? Yes, she did. Kate wore an Alexander McQueen gown and Jimmy Choo sandals and clutch and bowled everyone over. Including the celebrities! The royal couple were seen chatting animatedly with the likes of Nicole Kidman, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, Jennifer Lopez and Jennifer Garner! And each and everyone of them looked completely star struck. Also hilariously, we spotted Nigel Lythgoe lurking behind Prince William as he chatted with Nicole Kidman. Have a look and see if you can spot him in our gallery below!
[Photos: Getty Images]
We’re really curious to see what all the new changes at American Idol will mean for the show in it’s tenth season. From certain angles, the show seems dead already, but from others, it’s obvious that the producers and judges are desperate to breathe new life into it. But will it work? Producer Nigel Lythgoe hopes so, and he’s made a few changes to keep us interested.
In an effort to keep the audience engaged, Lythgoe has cut out the round of 24 episodes, saying “I didn’t think [the top 24] were very good, I was bored with them by the time they got there,” so instead, we will see the audition process and then immediately proceed to the Top 12. That works for us! In addition, it’s been revealed that Jimmy Iovine, chairman of Interscope Geffen A&M Records, will serve as a resident mentor to the contestants. Not sure if this means we’ll lose the pop-star mentors of yore (if so, we shall miss you Harry Connick, Jr. and Shania Twain…but not you, Jamie Foxx), but it seems like a they’re taking bigger steps toward creating a star with staying power and industry savvy, unlike most of the past Idol winners. In addition, the contestant’s minimum age age been lowered to 15, creating a larger pool to pick from.
The show debuts on January 12, at which point we’ll know for sure just how crazy/good/bad the new judges and format changes are.
[Photo: Plixi/Nigel Lythgoe]
We won’t actually get to see the fruits of their labor until January 2011, but the new American Idol judges have already been put to work tearing apart the latest crop of hopefuls. This photo of them on the set at a New Jersey audition yesterday was Tweeted by producer Nigel Lythgoe who wrote “It’s great to be back on American Idol. The judges were great.”
While some blogs have noticed that Randy Jackson is now occupying Simon Cowell‘s old spot, we think Randy, as the most senior-ranking judge at this point has tenure and deserves it. This means that Tyler gets Randy’s seat, so he’ll have to fill the “inoffensive, sometimes pandering, often nonsensical jibberish” judging role, while Lopez, seated in the center, will fill the “I’m just a dancer with a singing career, listen to my inoffensive, sometimes pandering, often nonsensical jibberish” judge quota. And just like Elijah, the producers had the good sense to leave Kara DioGuardi‘s seat empty.
[Photo: Plixi/Nigel Lythgoe]
There’s a chemistry on American Idol that makes the show enjoyable to watch, mainly due to Simon Cowell‘s authoritative and acerbic judging style, as well as his at-time contentious relationship with his fellow judges and host Ryan Seacrest. Former Idol producer Nigel Lythgoe thinks that once Simon leaves the show, the void will be too much for any one person to fill, which may be true. His suggestion? Clean slate – replace all the judges, not just Simon.
Lythgoe tells the blog Zap2It “I would replace the entire judging panel.” He also says frankly “I don’t think it really works replacing one person. They don’t have a great deal of chemistry at the moment. Ryan Seacrest and Simon have fallen out. It’s uncomfortable to watch. Ellen DeGeneres hasn’t worked out as well as we would have hoped.” If he had his druthers, he explains that his ideal judges’ panel would consist of “Elton John, Usher and Paula Abdul.” Not a bad lineup, but unfortunately, Lythgoe is no longer associated with the show, so it’s doubtful that this dream team will ever come to be. We do like the idea of a complete overhaul though – Kara DioGuardi and Ellen aren’t doing it for us this year, and Randy hasn’t done it for us ever, dawg.
[Photo: Getty Images]