It’s official: Steven Tyler is leaving “American Idol” and will return to being an actual rock idol, Fox confirmed. The Aerosmith frontman served as a judge during the 10th and 11th seasons of the reality TV competition.
“After some long...hard...thoughts... I’ve decided it’s time for me to let go of my mistress ‘American Idol’ before she boils my rabbit,” the rocker said in a statement. “I strayed from my first love, Aerosmith.” He added, “'Idol’ was over-the-top fun, and I loved every minute of it.... Now it’s time to bring Rock Back.”
For his part, “Idol” creator and executive producer Simon Fuller will miss the rock legend. He said, “Steven Tyler is a real ‘Idol,’ a rock legend. If you had told me 10 years ago he would be a judge on ‘American Idol,’ I would have thought it impossible. The fact that this became a reality and we had the pleasure of him gracing our stage for two seasons makes me very proud. I completely understand his desire to get back to his life as the singer in America's greatest-ever rock band. ‘American Idol’ will miss him!”
The news comes after another pop icon and “AI” judge, Jennifer Lopez, hinted that she may leave the show as well. She said this morning on the “Today" show, “I’m thinking maybe it’s time for me to go and do other things that I really love to do.”
J.Lo added, “It’s a tough decision either way, but I have to say that there are so many things that I do and that I put on hold for that.... At the end of the day, whichever way, it’s a heartbreaking decision if I’m going to have to go.”
Next season’s “American Idol” may look very different. Stay tuned.
See Steven Tyler chat about the Oscars and Oprah with Jimmy Kimmel:
Will you miss Steven Tyler on "Idol"? Who do you think should replace him on the judges' panel? Let us know in the comments.