April 26, 2005

ABC set to do Idol exposé, Fox threates legal action

The May sweeps begin this weekend, and ABC is set to jump into the period with both feet next week, as ABC News plans to air a Primetime Live special, Fallen Idol, which they promise to be an exposé of behind-the-scenes sordidness on Fox's top-rated American Idol.

Reportedly, the ABC report will include stories of an affair between Idol judge Paula Abdul and season two Idol singer Corey Clark, as well as claims that Abdul supposedly cheats and picks "favorites" to nurture, which violates the rules of the competition.

In a new book proposal, Season Two singer Corey Clark reportedly claims he had an affair with Paula Abdul in her guest house and even got his cell phone bills paid by the judge so they could secretly talk. Clark ended up getting booted off the show for having a criminal record but he claims Paula promised to spend $2 million to fund a recording career for him.

Paula denies Clark's accusations, and her "Idol" judges are coming to her defense -- but "Idol" producers may have reason to be nervous if claims being made by the former contestant reported in The Globe turn out to be true.

"There's no underhandedness going on behind the scenes," Simon told us. "Paula, to be fair to her, will spend more time backstage with the contestants giving encouragement. But that's not a bad thing. I think [the accusations] are rubbish. I think this is a guy who's out there to publish a book."

Fox lawyers have threatened to sue ABC if the Primetime segment airs.
ABC has been warned in writing it could face legal fallout for airing its scathing behind-the-scenes look at FOX's AMERICAN IDOL.

FOX believes ABC has interviewed a half a dozen losing contestants -- contestants who will claim AMERICAN IDOL producers and judges somehow manipulate the show's outcome!

At the center of the questions, the IDOL source claims, are the actions of show judge Paula Abdul.

"[ABC] is trying to say Paula somehow cheats and picks favorite singers to nurture, in violation of some sort of network standards," the IDOL source, who demanded anonymity, explains.

Fellow Judge Simon Cowell will tell TV show EXTRA Tuesday evening: "Paula, to be fair to her, will spend more time backstage with the contestants giving encouragement and everything else. But, thatÂ’s not a bad thing!"

The special edition of Primetime Live, Fallen Idol is set to air next Wednesday evening on ABC.

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