Boy this didn't last long, but Ellen DeGeneres has decided to call it quits as a judge from AMERICAN IDOL after just one season, noting that "It was hard to judge people and sometimes hurt their feelings". This leaves a second vacancy on the judges panel, as Simon Cowell is also departing. Sir Elton John, Stephen Tyler, Harry Connick, Jr. and Justin Timberlake have all been mentioned as possible replacement judges for Cowell. In recent days, Steven Tyler has expressed renewed interest in taking over for Cowell.
Although the May finale ratings were the lowest in the program's history with a little over 24 million viewers, the show still remains the most popular one on U.S. television. A former paint salesman, Lee DeWyze won a controversial victory over Crystal Boxersox during that finale.
With ratings beginning to sag, AMERICAN IDOL will hope to freshen-up it's appeal this coming season with new celebrity judges.