This just in: Paula Abdul is straight up headed back to TV!
Sources confirm to me exclusively that the ex-American Idol judge is finalizing a deal to headline an updated version of Star Search, the great-granddaddy of all televised singing competitions, for ABC. Abdul’s role is still being defined, but I hear it will likely include some combination of hosting and judging. An ABC rep refused to comment.
The Alphabet network had been wooing Abdul since last summer when she officially announced her departure from Idol. There was talk of her joining Dancing With the Stars in some capacity, but a deal never came to fruition. It’s not clear if Abdul’s Star Search gig would preclude her from joining former colleague Simon Cowell as a judge on the forthcoming US version of his UK monster hit, The X Factor, which is slated to debut on Fox in the fall of 2011. (Star Search is being targeted for this summer.)
This isn’t the first time that Star Search, which premiered in 1983 with host Ed McMahon, has been resurrected from the TV bone pile. In 2003, CBS brought the show back with Arsenio Hall in an attempt to capitalize on the massive popularity of the then-new American Idol. The revival was axed in 2004.
Thoughts? Smart career move for Abdul? Or does this have dud written all over it? Weigh in below! (Additional reporting by Keith Staskiewicz)