Paula Abdul denies saying anything disparaging about 'American Idol'
By John Bracchitta, 01/14/2009
Paula Abdul is apparently changing her tune regarding American Idol producers' treatment of her and obsessed fan Paula Goodspeed.
Abdul denied that she said anything disparaging about AmericanIdol during her now-infamous December radio interview with Barbara Walters while speaking on a panel at the Television Critics Association press tour with new judge Kara DioGuardi and some of the show's producers on Tuesday afternoon, the Los Angeles Timesreported.
Abdul also denied she'd had any confrontations with the producers over the decision to let Goodspeed auction for Idol's judges.
"First of all, I did not have any confrontation with any of the producers at all. At all. At all," Abdul told reporters during the panel, according to the Times. "I mean not one thing. I was not quoted as saying anything disparaging about American Idol. At all."
"I'm a big fan of the show," she added. "I am blessed to be the show. It's the greatest show on television all around the world."
During her interview with Walters, Abdul was quoted as saying that she had known about Goodspeed prior to her tryout on American Idol's fifth season.
"I was lucky enough that all the letters would come through my fan club, my fan mail club. But come American Idol when everyone can audition, she showed up," Abdul told Walters. "I was pre-warned by the producers 'Wait until you see this next girl, oh my god she is crazy about you' ... [and I said] 'This girl is a stalker of mine and please do not let her in.'"
However according to Abdul's interview with Walters, the producers had dismissed her concerns and decided to let Goodspeed audition "for [the] entertainment value."
"[It was] fun for them to cause me stress and I couldn't even look up," Abdul told Walters at the time. "If you watch the YouTube [video] of her auditioning, I can't even look up... [and] this was something that [they thought would] would make good television."
When a journalist attempted to point out what Abdul had previously alleged happened when Goodspeed -- who, according to Abdul, had been sending the Idol judge disturbing letters for nearly two decades before she was found dead near the Abdul's home in November -- auditioned, Abdul said her December comments had been true but failed to provide any additional explanation about the apparent contradictions in the two sets of comments.
"That is true, but that's that. I can't talk about it anymore. It's an ongoing police report," Abdul said, according to the Times.
"Generally speaking, we let fans in," added executive producer Ken Warwick, who was attending the press tour as well, according to the Times. "It's quite good for us. We have the strictest security because we're worried that's someone's going to try to hurt the judges during the confrontations. Sometimes it can get really mean."
Abdul also used the press conference to clarify that she never had a problem with the hiring of Kara DioGuardi as a fourth judge for the show's eighth season. She added that the two were good friends.
"I was never quoted that there were any problems in hiring Kara," Abdul told reporters. "I'll let you all know that Kara and I have a 10-year friendship. Kara was a stranger to me that I met in New York and I moved her into my home in L.A. and I introduced her to the some of the top publishers and songwriters because I believed in her talent so much."