The three celebrity judges on “American Idol” — Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan — have become close friends over the last six seasons. And though the trio of music stars hasn’t officially re-upped for Season 22, Perry thinks the judging panel could use a fourth member. So, during an interview with BuzzFeed on May 21, 2023, the pop star took it upon herself to extend an invitation to Grammy- and Emmy-winner Lizzo, who she thinks would be the perfect addition to the judging table next season.
“Idol” fans have had much to say on social media about Perry’s idea as news of her invite has quickly spread. Some are thrilled by the concept, while others think it’s a terrible idea. Here’s what you need to know:
Katy Perry Says She’s ‘Planted the Seed’ About Lizzo Joining ‘American Idol’
Chatting with BuzzFeed while playing with a litter of puppies, Perry was asked to name the most challenging aspect of being a judge on “Idol.”
“Probably being a woman and having a strong opinion,” she replied, winking at the camera.
Perry got quite a bit of pushback on social media and even got booed by the audience during Season 21, which ended Sunday night with 18-year-old Iam Tongi named the winner, whenever she gave constructive criticism to a contestant or made an occasional comment deemed by some to be inappropriate.
Feeling like she gets more pushback than the men in her midst, Perry said she thinks Lizzo could bring fierce female energy to the show to help even things out.
“I’d like Lizzo to come and join ‘American Idol,'” she told BuzzFeed.
Looking directly into the camera, Perry said, “This is an invitation from me, Katy Perry. Lizzo, I’m asking you to join the panel. I’m feeling a little outnumbered on the testosterone. I could really use some bold, honest, hot takes.”
News of Perry’s suggested fourth judge spread quickly. The next day, after the “Idol” grand finale, Access Hollywood asked her whether she’d taken any further steps to get Lizzo on board.
“I think this is the first step,” Perry replied coyly. “I have planted the seed. Now the seed must be watered. We need Lizzo — we need Lizzo all the time.”
But even if Lizzo doesn’t wind up being on the show, Perry said she loves the growth that happens between her, Richie, and Bryan, whom she called her “brothers” when talking with Access Hollywood.
“After six seasons, we see each other grow,” she said. “We’re all proud of each other as judges and we’ve been on an incredible journey. We’re just so grateful to be able to give this gift to kids, to let them find their purpose.”
Fans Have Lots to Say About Idea of Lizzo Joining ‘Idol’
The mere thought of Lizzo joining the “Idol” judging panel sent fans scrambling to Twitter to give their takes on the idea. Many loved the thought and started tagging “American Idol” and Lizzo to get the ball rolling.
“I would be all the way here for this,” one person tweeted, and another wrote, “Omg I actually like this.”
Someone else tweeted, “Y’all @lizzo needs to do American Idol. I Said it once, I’ll say it again.”
Many people wrote that they’d “start watching” the show if Lizzo joined the panel, while plenty of current “Idol” fans said her presence would make the show even better. And some of Perry’s fans hypothesized that she might be suggesting her own replacement should she need a break from the show.
On YouTube, one person wrote, “I think Lizzo might be replacing her on American Idol while she’ll release KP6 and do a world tour.”
However, there were also plenty of social media users who chose to diss the show, Perry or Lizzo in their tweets.
“Lizzo’s thriving and winning Grammys she has better things to be doing,” one person tweeted.
Another agreed, writing, “Katy, sweetie, why would Lizzo join American Idol when shes selling out arenas still??”
Meanwhile, someone else tweeted, “Lizzo on Idol? Goodbye, Idol.”
Though Lizzo has not responded yet to all the buzz about Perry’s invitation, she does love to champion other creatives, as she did as host of her 2022 Emmy-winning reality show, “Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls,” which chronicled her search for plus-sized backup dancers, per Glamour.
Lizzo and Perry also share a love for over-the-top costumes and bold fashion. In 2019, a video went viral of Lizzo cracking up at the Met Gala over Perry’s hamburger outfit and pretending to take a bite out of her.
ABC does not typically announce that the judges have renewed their contracts for the next “Idol” season until mid-summer, prior to in-person auditions taking place in the fall. So if Perry really wants to convince Lizzo to join them for Season 22, she has a few weeks to do so. The timing could actually be perfect, given that Lizzo’s current concert tour ends July 30.