'American Idol's' New Judges Nicki Minaj, Keith Urban and Mariah Carey Shoot New York Auditions (PHOTOS)
Newly announced American Idol judges rapper Nicki Minaj and country singer Keith Urban joined Mariah Carey and show veteran Randy Jackson for the show’s auditions at New York’s Lincoln Center on Sunday.
Host Ryan Seacrest joined the new panel for the first Season 12 cast photo and FOX released some shots of the judges outside the auditions with potential contestants lined up for their moment in front of the new panel.
Take a look at the first photos of Idol's new crew above.
What are the new judges looking for?
According to the Washington Post, Minaj says she’s looking for a “superstar.”
“Something that can’t be defined in words,” the 29-year-old rapper-singer vaguely explained.
As for Urban, who left his judging post on Australia’s The Voice for Idol, he says that his own experience competing in singing competitions will steer him away from being mean.
“I did similar shows when I was very young in Australia,” Urban, 44, pointed out. “And I was sort of crucified by one judge. So I don’t know that I’ll ever be that guy.”
Pushed against the deadline of Sunday’s on-camera auditions, FOX confirmed the new judges early on Sunday.
“Nicki’s an unbelievably captivating international phenomenon who has made an indelible mark on rap and pop,” FOX’s Alternative Entertainment President Mike Darnell said in a statement. “And Keith is another great addition to Idol – he’s one of the biggest stars in country music and I know that our fans and contestants will fall in love with him.”
Reportedly, Minaj is getting a $12 million dollar paycheck while Urban will receive between $3-5 million for filling the post.
Carey’s hire was confirmed back in July with a reported salary of $17 million. And Jackson’s position was precarious for a while until negotiations went south with Latin pop star Enrique Iglesias earlier this week.
What are your thoughts on the new Idol judges? Sound off in the comments section below.