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Nigel Lythgoe: No Longer "Idol" Wannabe

8/4/2008 12:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Nigel LythgoeNigel Lythgoe is off "American Idol."

TMZ has learned Lythgoe, who has executive produced the show for seven seasons, has just taken himself off the program and will not return. No replacement has been named.

We're told Lythgoe felt it was time for someone else to step in. Sources say he's said privately he is "not passionate about it anymore." "A.I.'s" ratings slipped last season, and the show was getting a little boring.

We're also told Lythgoe is working on some kind of a joint venture with Simon Fuller, who created "Idol." Lythgoe wants to spend his time on "So You Think You Can Dance."


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If this is true, all I can say is "Hallelujah"! I may actually consider watching AI again with Lythgoe gone, if only other Hollywood folks would follow his example.

2215 days ago


Nigel is right. American Idol is not only lacking in entertainment value, it is producing some of the most middle-of-the-road, cookie cutter musical artists around. If you win you have a guarantee multiplatinum album. Make the Top Ten and someone will give a shot at something. Legitimate artists are not lining up for AI auditions. HOWEVER, each season of So You Think You Can Dance brings more and more talented professionals -- choreographers and dancers -- to the table. Not only for the talent, but for the general positivity. Everyone associated with the show from the audience to the judges are dance lovers. They support dance and dancers and we all want to see people grow and do their best. On AI, the judges don't seem to really care about the shows participants' personal growth in their field. I cannot count how many times the judges have encouraged dancers to either come back to auditions the next year (Twitch did and look where he is!!) or to continue dancing although they have been eliminated from the competitons. They prove you can be critical AND encouraging at the same time. SYTYCD is the gold standard of reality talent competitions. Good for Nigel!

2215 days ago


so you think you can dance is way better anyways!

2215 days ago


FRicking English Turd coming over here passing trash on that he invented in England to the US so he and his buddies can make huge amounts of money, only to laugh at America. Get back to England where the tax rate at your level is 90%.

We won the war. Take the Simon types with you and go comment how awful England has become. Where Muhammed is now the most popular name for a newborn boy. Go fix your own Empire "Nigel".

2215 days ago


I love So You Think You Can Dance. Nigel gives good, professional critiques to the contestants, and the show overall is just a total entertainment package. I also feel like it's really helping a bunch of young kids get a leg up in their craft.

You know what would improve Idol? Cat Deely instead of Ryan Seacrest as a host, and the same kind of "juried" eliminations that SYTYCD has. It would let them dump the cruddy performers and really focus on those who are improving and doing well.

2215 days ago



2215 days ago


When Nigel Lythgoe yelled at the audience and told them not to come because they booed him, I pretty much gave up on the show.

2215 days ago


I am glad he is gone, who cares about him anyways, he isn't the talent. He should have stayed way off from camera range in the first place. Hated always seeing him close to the stage, clapping his hands. Such a fake, hate him even more on his other show. He sure doesn't look like any dancer to me.

2215 days ago


As someone who has watched all seasons of both shows, my opinion is that SYTYCD is also already starting to slip.

2215 days ago


Well, this is interesting !!! IMO American Idol has not been the same since Season 2! IDOL FOUND -- GAME OVER!
Clay Aiken is and will always be the best the show has ever found !!!

2215 days ago

Canyon Girl    

No heartburn with this guys leavig; howevr, American Idol is the best thing on TV!! I agree when the search is on we do see some pretty quirky people; however, watching the eliminations to he final 12 is great. I love this show. I love Simon and his dry humor (also the fact that he gives thousands to charity), Paula is a doll, Randy is everyone's guy! The show would not be complete without Ryan Seacrest. All four is what makes this show.

Quit griping if you don't like the show - you are probabl just jeaslous!! Go join the Obama Hussian goup!!

2215 days ago


Maybee.......the show has gotten Boring because of NIGEL. He is the common denominator in all 7 seasons. Perhaps some of the Dirty Tricks & manipulation of the votes will stop now. It's possible that it is too little, too late.

2215 days ago


Maybe the show would be less boring if they let those people who really shined...actually shine...rather than throwing those they don't want to win under the bus week after week. Maybe the show would be less boring if they had 3 respectable judges that actually gave CONSTRUCTIVE CRITIQUING, rather than idiotic blathering semblences of criticisms, the show would be less boring. Maybe if they didn't have assinine ego driven mentors...and mentors like they had during Seasons 2 and 6 (when did Barry Manilow and Rod Stewart mentor), the show would be less boring. Maybe if they didn't feed lines to the judges before some contestants sing...the show would be less boring. And maybe...just maybe they should make the show legitimately on the up and up...and then it would be less boring.

Nigel..ya think???

2215 days ago


"Hallelujah" for sure, Maybe Jason Castro did "Shoot the Sheriff" this season. I assume that the "deputy" Simon Cowell will stay on?

2215 days ago


This is NOT an exclusive. had this LAST NIGHT. Nice try, though. Stealing stuff from smaller sites.

2214 days ago
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