Nigel Lythgoe Addresses JLo, Steven Tyler Exits From American Idol

American Idol Executive Producer Nigel Lythgoe has finally addressed the departures of judges Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez.

“I’m really upset. I spoke to Jennifer last Friday,” Nigel told Ryan Seacrest on his radio show. She called me just after she spoke to you and I have to respect both Jennifer and Steven’s decisions. They’ve got a much bigger career than just sitting judging ‘Idol.’ They’re both very talented people and you have to respect their decision to carry on and do what they were doing before ‘Idol.’ It breaks my heart, because I love them both dearly.”

Could Nigel’s statement squash rumors that Jennifer and Steven were’t asked to return to American Idol 2013?

Nigel says he could see American Idol’s future including a “one year tour” for judges, meaning that a celeb judge would be on for one season then go. That would be an easy way to avoid paying the celeb more money every year, huh?

He won’t say if there are any names leading the race for the new judges’ seats at the moment.

“At the end of the day it’s chemistry,” he said. “It’s not easy. At the moment while we’re in the spotlight of the press it’s not really helping negotiations with anybody. I’m sure nobody’s name will be mentioned at this time while we’re getting it together.”