Are American audiences calling for Katy Perry’s removal from American Idol? Here’s a list of celebrities who could potentially replace her as a judge.

Beloved American Idol judge Katy Perry announced that season 22 is her last. Here are some celebrities who could take her place on the judging panel.

American Idol's Katy Perry With A Montage In The Background

American Idol judge Katy Perry has announced that season 22 will be her last one with the show, and, although she’s irreplaceable, there are some celebrities who should take her seat at the judging table alongside Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan. Katy, Lionel, and Luke have been American Idol judges for seven years, ever since ABC revived the reality singing competition in 2018. FOX canceled the show after 15 seasons in 2016.

On the February 12, 2024 episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live!Katy announced that American Idol season 22 would be her last because she wants to pursue other plans. Katy followed in the footsteps of previous American Idol judges, including Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and Simon Cowell, who made up the first judging panel. They were later either joined or followed by judges such as Kara DioGuardi, Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, Ellen DeGeneres, Steven Tyler, Harry Connick Jr., Keith Urban, and Jennifer Lopez. Here are ten female celebrities who should join American Idol after Katy leaves the show.

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1. Jennifer Lopez

American Idol Judge – Seasons 10, 11, 13, 14, & 15

Jennifer Lopez on American Idol Smiling

American Idol Judges Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez, and Randy Jackson Smiling On The Panel

Global superstar Jennifer Lopez joined American Idol in season 10, and continued to serve as a judge for seasons 11, 13, 14, and 15. During her many years with the show, she helped discover winners Scotty McCreery, Phillip Phillips, Caleb Johnson, Nick Fradiani, and Trent Harmon, as well as season 10 runner-up Lauren Alaina, and finalists Haley Reinhart and Pia Toscano.

Jennifer Lopez on American Idol Smiling

As an American Idol judge, Jennifer had a knack for offering the ideal balance of praise and constructive criticism. She would be the perfect replacement for Katy because she’d bring back her kindness, encouragement, and creativity to the judging panel, which would match Katy’s personality.

2. Dolly Parton

American Idol Mentor – Season 7

Dolly Parton and David Archuleta On American Idol Mentoring Session

Country music legend Dolly Parton served as a mentor for the contestants during season 7, including winner David Cook and runner-up David Archuleta, but she chose not to judge their performances. She said at the time that she couldn’t criticize somebody else’s singing. In an interview with Taste of Country, Dolly revealed that she gets asked every season to be on American Idol, but she always turns down the offers to be a judge. She explained, “I really have trouble judging people. I would have a lot of trouble telling them yes or no – especially no.”

Although Dolly might have trouble telling the contestants no, in this kinder and gentler age of American Idol, she would fit in perfectly with the judging panel. The days of Simon tearing into contestants with his biting commentary are over, so Dolly might find being a judge on the show to be easier and more pleasant experience. Dolly is an icon who would bring her decades of performance experience and immense singing and songwriting talent to the judging table.

3. Taylor Swift

The Voice Knockout Round Advisor – Seasons 7 and 17

Taylor Swift On The Voice With Arms Raised

Superstar singer Taylor Swift has never served as a mentor or guest judge on American Idol, but she did offer advice as a Knockout Round advisor during The Voice seasons 7 and 17. Taylor is one of the most talented and popular stars in the world, with a fan base that spans many generations. She rose to superstardom when she was in her teens, so she would be able to offer that perspective to the American Idol hopefuls. Taylor would make an excellent addition to the judging panel.

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4. Beyoncé

American Idol Mentor – Season 10

Beyonce Mentoring Haley Reinhart on American Idol In Front Of A Piano

Beyonce is smiling on stage at a concert

Beyonce is standing on stage at her concert with a silver background Beyonce is smiling on stage during a concert

Megastar Beyoncé was an American Idol season 10 mentor. She brought her expertise as a singer and performer to the Top 3, Scotty McCreery, Lauren Alaina, and Haley Reinhart. Beyoncé’s soft-spoken demeanor would be a departure from Katy’s extroverted personality. However, what wouldn’t change is the fact that, like Katy, Beyoncé is an extraordinarily talented person who could help transform the American Idol hopefuls into stars.

A custom image of Beyonce in the Renaissance Movie concert and the Renaissance show

5. Katharine McPhee & David Foster

Katharine Was The American Idol Season 5 Runner-Up; David Served As A Mentor During That Same Season

David Foster and Katharine McPhee Posing Together

Married couple Katharine McPhee and David Foster met when Katharine was an American Idol season 5 contestant and David was a mentor, although they didn’t form a love connection until much later. Katharine is a powerhouse vocalist and successful actress, while David is an iconic record producer, film composer, and music executive. They’re very entertaining both individually and together, and theyhave captivating personalities that would light up the judging panel.

Not only are Katharine and David incredibly talented, but they have magnetic stage presence. Katharine and David showcased their funny banter and musical gifts during “The Kat and Dave Show,” which they created on Instagram Live during the COVID-19 pandemic. They are also both wonderful at giving advice to singers, as evidenced by David’s mentoring of Katharine during American Idol season 5, and Katharine being a duet partner to contestants Alyssa Wray and the late Willie Spence during the Top 24 round of American Idol season 19. They’re true stars, but they know how to share the spotlight, which would make them perfect American Idol judges.

6. Miley Cyrus

American Idol Mentor – Season 9

Miley Cyrus On American Idol Singing

Miley served as a mentor on American Idol season 9 when she was just 17 years old. She offered great advice to the contestants, which she later continued to do in her role as a coach on The Voice seasons 11 and 13. Because Miley started her career so young, she understands what it’s like for the American Idol contestants. Like Katy, Miley is outrageous and pushes boundaries. She also makes it her mission to embrace all people. Miley’s personality and energy would be a perfect fit because she’d be picking up right where Katy left off.

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7. Jordin Sparks

American Idol Winner – Season 6 & Mentor – Season 21

In a February 16 X post, American Idol season 6 winner Jordin Sparks revealed her desire to join the judging panel. She wrote, “Oh hiiii @AmericanIdol—I hear a seat opened up at the judges’ table! I’m putting my name in the hat!” Jordin would be an ideal fit as a judge because she’s not only an amazingly talented singer and actress, but she’s also one of the most successful winners of the show. She also holds the title of the youngest winner ever at 17 years old.

Jordin knows firsthand what it takes to win and then maintain a long career in the music and entertainment business. She would apply that knowledge to being a judge. Jordin has already proven that she can be a terrific guide for the contestants when she served as an American Idol season 21 Hollywood Week mentor.

8. Lady Gaga

American Idol Mentor – Season 10

Lady Gaga With the American Idol Season 10 Contestants As a Mentor

Legendary singer Lady Gaga is also an extraordinarily talented musician. She served as an American Idol season 10 mentor, offering encouragement and support to the Top 4 contestants, James Durbin, Haley Reinhart, Lauren Alaina, and Scotty McCreery. Like Katy, Lady Gaga is known for helping people to embrace their true selves. As an American Idol judge, she’d allow the contestants to be who they really are, while nurturing their talents. She’d be the perfect replacement for Katy.

9. Paula Abdul

American Idol Judge – Seasons 1-8

Paula Abdul On American Idol Smiling on Judging Panel Randy Jackson, Kara DioGuardi, Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell laugh at the American Idol judges table

As an original American Idol judge, singer and dancer Paula Abdul set the standard for what judging would look like on the show. While Simon offered harsh criticism and Randy kept it real with the contestants, Paula was known as the nice judge, who kept the singers’ feelings in mind while giving her commentary.

OG American Idol Judges Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson stand side by side, smiling for the camera.

She was an integral part of the heyday of the show, helping to discover superstars such as winners Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard, Fantasia Barrino, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Hicks, Jordin Sparks, David Cook, and Kris Allen, along with other American Idol legends such as Clay Aiken, Jennifer Hudson, Katharine McPhee, Chris Daughtry, and Adam Lambert.

Paula Abdul on American Idol Smiling

Paula and Katy are similar in their approaches, serving as cheerleaders for the contestants, but also offering constructive criticism when needed. They both offer a kind of maternal support to the contestants as well. The return of Paula to American Idol would remind viewers of how influential the show once was and could return it to its former glory.

10. Just Sam

American Idol Winner – Season 18

Just Sam on American Idol Smiling and Holding a Microphone

Samantha Diaz, who goes by their stage name, Just Sam, won American Idol season 18 in 2020, but they struggled after the show, eventually returning to busking in the New York City subways where they started out singing publicly. Because their season occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown, they didn’t have the same post-show experience as previous winners. Not only would Just Sam bring their experience as a contestant in the competition to their tenure as a judge, but American Idol could make up for its lack of promotion of them by giving them a second chance to appear on the show.

Although it will be difficult to fill Katy’s shoes, these ten singers could definitely be perfect replacements for her. They have the talent and experience to help up-and-coming singers to spread their wings and fly. They’ve proven through their previous American Idol experiences that they know how to make new stars shine. They’d also fit in well with Lionel and Luke. Katy will always be greatly missed, but there are many fantastic choices who could take her seat on the American Idol judging panel.

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