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Lionel Richie 'American Idol' Wants You To Join as Judge

6/19/2017 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

"American Idol" has its sights set on judge #2 for the reboot ... and we're told it's Lionel Richie.

'A.I.' sources tell TMZ ... producers think Richie's legendary music career makes him a perfect pick ... credibility and a knack for honing in on what will become popular. Richie is also extremely outgoing, which makes for good TV.

We don't know if the 'A.I.' folks have formally reached out to Richie. We contacted Richie's people, but so far they're mum.  

The question ... how much can producers afford to pay Richie, or for that matter any judge who fills the vacant seats? They paid a queen's ransom to Katy Perry -- $25 million -- which essentially blew their intended judge's budget.

As we reported ... Ryan Seacrest is about to sign a deal to host the new version for somewhere between $10M and $15M.

'Wife Swap' Family Murders Other Mom Thinks Strict Home Life Made Son Snap

6/19/2017 12:50 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

The Stockdales, the "Wife Swap" family now at the center of a double murder investigation, were headed for trouble years ago due to their parenting style ... according to the woman who swapped with them.

Laurie Tonkovic recalled a specific incident with Jacob Stockdale, the son suspected of murdering his brother and mother before attempting to kill himself last week. Laurie swapped with Kathryn Stockdale in 2008, and says when she allowed Jacob and his 3 brothers to have more freedom ... Jacob freaked out.

She says he was terrified his religious parents would be mad and he would "burn in hell." Laurie believes he'd finally had enough of the strict environment, and snapped on his family.

As we reported ... cops say he shot and killed Kathryn and 21-year-old James. He shot himself, but survived. He's in critical condition.

Wife Swap: Stockdale from Andrew Suhl on Vimeo.

Corinne Olympios Does Lunch with BF ... What Sex Scandal?

6/18/2017 11:13 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Corinne Olympios and her BF are putting up a united front during her "Bachelor in Paradise" sex scandal with DeMario Jackson ... even if they're not talking about it.

Corinne grabbed some lunch Saturday in L.A. with Jordan Gielchinsky, carrying on like your average couple ... even though their situation is anything but. Both were mum on Corinne's next move

We broke the story ... Jordan is standing by Corinne in the midst of the investigation over her sexual encounter with fellow "BiP" contestant DeMario -- despite agreeing she wouldn't hook up on the show. Corinne says she was out of it and it wasn't consensual.

Classic move by a good beau. 

Corinne Olympios Told BF She Wouldn't Hook Up On 'BiP,' He Still Backs Her

6/18/2017 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Corinne Olympios' boyfriend knew exactly what he was signing up for when she decided to go on "Bachelor in Paradise" ... with one HUGE caveat.

Sources close to the couple tell TMZ ... Corinne and her BF, Jordan Gielchinsky, agreed she would NOT hook up with other cast members, and was only going to do the show to get pub for her new clothing line. Her plan was to be on for a couple episodes, and then bow out.

Of course, that plan went to crap on the first day of taping when DeMario Jackson and Corinne ended up "rubbing, touching and fingering" in the pool. We broke the story ... Warner Bros. shut down production, launched an investigation and sent the cast home.

We're told Jordan was initially upset when he heard what went down, but once he got the full context of the event -- meaning the heavy drinking -- he backed Corinne. He agrees she was way too drunk to give consent, and strongly believes producers and medical staffers should have intervened.

The couple's been inseparable in L.A. since she returned from Mexico. 

CeeLo Green Crossing Guard's Tryout Brings Ex-'Voice' Coach to His Feet!!

6/18/2017 7:43 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Forget turning his chair around ... CeeLo Green got so pumped when an airport crossing guard sang for him he damn near jumped out of his seat.

We asked the former "The Voice" coach at LAX Saturday if he'd be down to judge on 'American Idol' ... he made his answer clear pretty quickly -- he still prefers his old gig. Then before we knew it ... he was back on NBC's singing competition in his coach's chair!

Okay, it was actually his wheelchair -- dude's got some back issues -- but it felt just like the TV show based on the talent level. Those traffic guards are always yelling ... but who knew they could sing?!

Interesting note -- the singer told our guy he actually tried out for 'The Voice' a few years ago ... but had way more success this time around.

William Shatner From Captain Kirk to ... Bunny Handler!!!

6/17/2017 11:18 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

William Shatner may have explored new worlds where no man has gone before, but now he's in Sweden ... running around with rabbits.

The legendary "Star Trek" actor is in Stockholm shooting for his new comedy/reality show "Better Late Than Never" ... and showed off his skills as a bunny handler. Spoiler alert -- he wasn't great at it.

Rabbit show jumping is big in Sweden -- kind of like the Westminster Dog Show in the U.S.

Shatner and his fellow cultural icons on the show -- Henry Winkler, Terry Bradshaw and George Foreman -- all took part in the rabbit racing and looked like they had a blast. As usual, host Jeff Dye was their guide.

Ryan Seacrest He's Signing Multi-Million Dollar 'A.I.' Deal

6/17/2017 7:38 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Ryan Seacrest will sign a rich deal to host the new version of "American Idol," but it's not nearly as rich as the one Katy Perry signed.

Our ABC sources tell TMZ ... the deal is expected to be signed this weekend. The sources say the network offered $10 mil, Seacrest wanted $15 mil and they compromised somewhere in between ... but closer to $10M than $15M.

TMZ broke the story ... Katy Perry snagged $25 million to appear as a judge on the show.  

We're told the network, along Fremantle and Core Media --  the show's producers -- have not picked the other 2 judges, but whoever it is they'll be relatively cheap ... because they have to be.

'B.I.P' Corinne Olympios I Was So Drunk I did a Face-plant in the Jacuzzi

6/17/2017 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Corinne Olympios was so drunk when she got sexual with fellow "Bachelor in Paradise" castmate, DeMario Jackson, she did a face-plant in the Jacuzzi and after she was dragged and laying on the ground the sexual contact continued, but sources who have seen the video say it just didn't happen.

Sources involved in Corinne's representation tell TMZ ... she had a half a bottle of champagne in a vehicle before arriving at the bar, where she had some mixed drinks with hard liquor as well as one or 2 shots.

The sources say she did not object to the sexual contact and may have indeed consented, but they say she was not capable of consent, point to the "Jacuzzi face-plant" and being laid out on the ground.

They also claim a cast member told producers after the face-plant to stop, but they responded that she was "fine."  

But our sources who have seen the video say Corinne's version is "absolutely not true" ... no face-plant, no being laid out on the ground ... nothing like that. The sources who have seen the tape say she was clearly with it the entire time in the pool, and there's no ambiguity after seeing the video.

The sources add none of the cast members complained ... quite the opposite they say ... many have come forward to say Corinne knew exactly what she was doing. 

'Mob Wives' Star Renee Graziano Not Really Buying Drama in 'Paradise'

6/17/2017 12:20 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

"Mob Wives" star Renee Graziano just can't believe it ... drama in paradise?!

Renee was leaving Craig's Thursday night in WeHo when we asked her about the "Bachelor in Paradise" controversy over alleged sexual misconduct between Corinne Olympios and DeMario Jackson in the pool.  As we reported, "B.I.P" has been put on ice while Warner Bros. investigates.

Renee knows a thing or 2 about excessive drinking. She's in recovery and knows all about boozing ... on and off camera. 

DeMario Jackson's Ex He's 'Sh***y' But Would Not Take Advantage Of a Drunk Corinne

6/16/2017 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

DeMario Jackson's ex-gf -- the woman who exposed him as a villain on national TV -- is actually coming to his defense in the Corinne Olympios scandal ... but she has a strange way of doing it.

Lexi Thexton claims DeMario is nothing more than a "30-year-old man child" who parties way too much -- but also says there's no way the "Bachelor in Paradise" star would knowingly take advantage of a drunk woman ... as Corinne insinuated when she declared she's a victim.

For Lexi to say anything supportive about her ex is a big deal. Mind you, she also called him a "sh***y guy" who's completely self-absorbed ... among a list of other insults. She did offer a theory about what really happened with Corinne -- and strongly believes it's more about 2 people getting too drunk.

For non-'Bachelorette' viewers ... Lexi made a surprise appearance on the show, calling out DeMario for trying to woo Rachel Lindsay while still dating her. He got booted off the show that very same episode.

'Bachelor in Paradise' Contract Producers Not Responsible For Corinne, DeMario's Sexual Encounter

6/15/2017 8:31 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Now that Corinne Olympios appears headed for a legal showdown with producers of "Bachelor in Paradise" ... the contract she signed becomes extrememly relevant, and problematic.

The contract contestants sign, obtained by TMZ, says in part all contestants waive their right to sue producers over claims of "negligence, personal injury (including without limitation, any injuries arising out of the transmission of a sexually transmitted disease or unwelcome/unlawful contact or other interaction among participants)."

The short of it ... even if she was in a blackout state when she was engaged in sexual activity with DeMario Jackson, the producers would not be responsible. There's a catch ... courts have made it clear in situations involving similar contracts, if the producers were reckless that clause would not be enforceable. And it would seem watching someone incapable of giving consent to sexual activity and allowing it to happen ... is reckless.

And still another catch ... as we reported, people who have seen the video tell us Corinne seems lucid and engaged during the entire swimming pool episode.

To be continued ... 

DeMario Jackson Begs 'BiP' Fans ... Don't Bash Corinne

6/15/2017 8:01 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

DeMario Jackson doesn't want anyone hating on Corinne Olympios for what went down in the pool between them ... leading to "Bachelor in Paradise" production shutting down.

Jackson was leaving a gym in L.A. when he was asked if he was any closer to obtaining the pool footage he believes will clear him of wrongdoing. He's tight-lipped about that ... but opens up about Corinne and any backlash from their sexual encounter.

DeMario makes it clear -- people shouldn't be taking sides, and definitely shouldn't slander Corinne. He also seems very confident ... there's no reason to paint him as the bad guy.

'Bachelor in Paradise' Corinne Was 'Very With It' In the Pool ... Claims Cast Member

6/15/2017 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Corinne Olympios was topless in the pool with DeMario Jackson and so aware of her surroundings, she greeted a cast member walking by, showing no signs of distress -- but Corinne's attorney isn't buying it.

Sources close to the "Bachelor in Paradise" cast tell TMZ ... one female cast member walked right by the pool when Corinne and DeMario were hooking up, and saw her with her top off and her legs wrapped around him. We're told Corinne yelled out to the passerby by name and seemed "very with it" ... coherent.

The cast member told others she would have done something to break up the pool tryst if she felt Corinne was too drunk. Further, the cast member says cameras followed her when she walked by ... so the whole encounter should be on tape.

Corinne's attorney, Marty Singer, tells TMZ ... "If nothing inappropriate happened, why did production get shut down? Something serious clearly happened."

The female cast member says Corinne talked about the DeMario hookup the next day because she was upset her boyfriend, back home, would find out -- but she never heard Corinne say anything about it being non-consensual.

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