Jennifer Lopez Will Return To ‘American Idol’ Says Executive Producer Nigel Lythgoe [AUDIO]

August 10, 2011 9:00 am

(Photo: Getty Images)

It’s been just two months since the finale of “American Idol” season 10 that crowned 16-year-old Scotty McCreery winner, but buzz of Jennifer Lopez‘s undetermined future on the show was settled today as Executive Producer Nigel Lythgoe confirmed that she will be returning for a second season.

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Lythgoe called in to “On Air with Ryan Seacrest” Wednesday and made the impromptu announcement that Jennifer will once again hit the road with returning judges Steven Tyler and Randy Jackson soon to hear singers from season 11 audition cities Denver, Houston, St. Louis, Portland, San Diego, Pittsburgh and Charleston.

“I am delighted to say that all three judges, along with the brilliant host of ‘American Idol’ is back for the next season,” said Lythgoe over the phone. The return of the celebrated judging panel is no surprise in light of the critical acclaim and Emmy nominations season 10 earned.

This year “American Idol” has 10 Emmy nominations and “So You Think You Can Dance” has eight. The choreographers on the show have previously been nominated, but surprisingly this is the first year that the show itself has been nominated. “American Idol” on the other hand has been nominated eight times for reality-competition TV show and It has lost seven times to “Amazing Race” and most recently “Top Chef.”

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With the Emmy Awards right around the corner, Ryan sent a plea out to all members of the Academy or family members listening, “Please check the box marked ‘American Idol.'”

This season of “So You Think You Can Dance” is down to the final four Marko Germar, Sasha Mallory, Melanie Moore and Tadd Gadduang and the two night season finale starts tonight on FOX.

Nearing the close of another dance-packed season, Nigel said “I’m thrilled that the season is coming to an end,” but also added, “I’m not exhausted. They [the dancers] are just too good. You don’t want to appear exhausted, because they’re the ones who are doing all the hard work, those young dancers.”

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When asked for his prediction of who he thinks will win the title of America’s Favorite Dancer this season, Nigel shared this, “I do believe that it is going to be between the two girls. I think the girls this year have been stronger than the boys. This year I think Melanie and Sasha are the right two girls to go into the finale. I do believe that one of them will win.”

The two night season finale kicks off tonight at 8/7c on FOX with guest judges Katie Holmes and Kenny Ortega. Then tune in tomorrow night to see who will be crowned America’s Favorite Dancer!

The last day to audition for Season 11 of “American Idol” is on August 26th in Houston, Texas — click here for information. “Idol” returns to Fox this January — follow Ryan and American Idol on Twitter to get updates from the road as they scour the country for the next big singing talent.