Minaj explained she worried about how she was going to be perceived on the show since the current twelfth season began its auditions, as she's expressed very colorful yet critical commentary on the judging panel thus far alongside Mariah Carey, Keith Urban and Randy Jackson.
"I didn't know what to expect going in to the show. I was so nervous. I had a lot of anxiety. I felt like, 'Okay, I know everybody's just going to hate me,'" the first-time judge recalled.
"There were moments in the audition process that I would say to the producers, 'I can't do this anymore. If everyone is going to give a good critique and I'm going to be the only one being honest, then America is going to hate me. I'm going to be seen as mean.' And the producers said, 'Nicki, trust us, America is going to appreciate the honesty.' And that's all I had to go on."
However, Minaj is hanging her hat on the fact she's been herself the whole time.
"When I'm laughing on the show, I'm genuinely laughing. I can't come up there and pretend. I just can't do it. I can't be someone I'm not. I can't sit there with a phony smile on my face; I can't do it. I'm happy that people are responding well to it. I mean, if I'm polarizing, I'm polarizing! I don't know. But I definitely didn't have a preconceived notion of who I was going to be on that panel," she told reporters, according to Us.
Minaj may be loving her job, but she's still uncertain as to whether she will return to Idol for its thirteenth season.
"I like to save the mystery and the drama. I never give that away, but you know what? I always say this -- and I mean this from the bottom of my heart -- the people behind the scenes at Idol have been a dream to work with and I really, really honestly mean that," the rapper noted.
"[Fox executive] Mike Darnell took a chance on me. Nobody else understood it. They were like, 'Nicki who?' and he took a chance on me. He believed in me. His daughter and his wife believed in me, and so I'm just super grateful to have been given the opportunity."
American Idol's next twelfth-season broadcast airs tonight at 8PM ET/PT on Fox and will feature the remaining eight finalists performing for home viewer votes.
(Photo credit Fox)
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