Paula Abdul May Not Return to American Idol
07/20/2009 AT 06:05 AM EDT
"Very sadly, it does not appear that she's going to be back on Idol," David Sonenberg, Abdul's manager, told the Los Angeles Times, which also reports that a grassroots campaign took shape this weekend to keep Abdul on the show – along with other judges Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and recent addition Kara DioGuardi – for its ninth season, auditions for which start next month.
Though FOX said earlier this year that Abdul, 47, was "an integral part of the show," Sonenberg says there is no contract on the table. "I find it under these circumstances particularly unusual; I think unnecessarily hurtful," he said of the delay. "I find it kind of unconscionable and certainly rude and disrespectful that they haven't stepped up and said what they want to do."
– Stephen M. Silverman