During his executive session at the TCA summer press tour, Fox entertainment president Kevin Reilly announced that Mariah Carey would be joining "American idol" for the 12th season of the singing competition.
Sitting onstage at the Beverly Hilton, Reilly rang up Carey on his cell phone and put her on speakerphone to say hello to the assembled TV critics. "I am so excited to be joining 'Idol,'" said Carey. "I wish I could've been there myself to tell you but this all kind of just happened real quickly. I can't wait to get started in a couple of months."
In a statement released by the network during the session Carey said, "As a singer, songwriter and producer, it's going to be fun and rewarding to help find new talent and give back with 'American Idol'. I'm currently in the studio working on my new album and its first single, 'Triumphant,' which will be out early next month. I can't wait to channel my creative energy as a part of this show which is a massive global phenomenon."
Reilly put the kibosh on talk of any other changes to the judging panel or the format of the show itself in the wake of its decline in ratings and the departure of Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez. He did say that Randy Jackson was "instrumental" in bringing Carey on board, so it seems unlikely they'd be giving him the heave-ho.
So what do you think, does this mean contestants will finally stop attempting Mariah Carey songs for fear of singing them in front of her?
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Michael Brodeur is the assistant arts editor for the Boston Globe, covering pop music, TV, and nightlife.