Harry Connick Jr., the famous singer, who has been on American Idol a number of times as a performer and mentor, has inked a contract to serve as one of the show’s judges alongside Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban, for the 13th season, said a source close to the negotiations.
This news come just a week after it was thought Dr. Luke was one of the frontrunners for the judgeship, but negotiations were stopped due to a conflict with Sony Music his recording label. Universal Music Group a rival to Sony holds the exclusive recording rights to American Idol.
Earlier in the week, it was reported that Connick was leading the chase for the final judge’s slot, as Fox did not want a second woman on the panel after the friction created last season with Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey.
On Thursday, Simon Fuller the producer of Idol hosted a party in Bouchon a hotspot in Los Angeles. Attending the party was Randy Jackson, who is no longer a judge but will remain on as a mentor during the new season. All of the three judges Connick, Lopez and Urban were on hand to toast the announcement.
Scooter Braun, the current manager for Justin Bieber was widely thought to be the next candidate for judge after it was officially confirmed that Dr. Luke would not take part. However, Braun is said to have passed on the offer to a judge.
The show will start its 13th season this fall, but has suffered big drops in viewing audience and is looking for a panel of judges that will add to the show in a positive way.