Entertainment & Arts

Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez join American Idol

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Media captionLopez said the judges would be ''looking for the next Michael Jackson''

Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler and singer Jennifer Lopez will be judges on the forthcoming 10th series of American Idol, it has been announced.

The new line-up was announced by presenter Ryan Seacrest at a press conference in Los Angeles.

Of the original four judges, only record producer Randy Jackson remains.

Simon Cowell quit the programme in May to concentrate on a US version of his show The X Factor, while comedienne Ellen DeGeneres left in July.

Songwriter Kara DioGuardi was the last member of the panel to quit, announcing her decision to stand down earlier this month.

Lopez and Tyler had both been rumoured to be joining the long-running reality show for several weeks.

'Special year'

According to People magazine, Lopez - who has had chart hits with Love Don't Cost A Thing and Ain't It Funny - will be paid $12m (£7.7m) for her role on the show.

"We're looking for the next Michael Jackson," she told the audience at the televised press conference.

"It's such a special year - 10 years - it's just an amazing thing to be part of. I feel really lucky to be here and I'm really excited to see who we find.

Image caption The series will return to screens in the US in January 2011

"I think what we'll bring is the fact that we do have the experience of trying to make it in this business and achieving a level of success and what that brings with it. Pressure, success, fame, all of those things," she said.

Tyler said the opportunity was too good to pass up. He said: "I was on tour and this was thrown at me.

"I looked upon it as a great opportunity and then when I found out who was on board I threw down right away."

He added he wanted to "bring some rock to this rollercoaster".

"I want to give everybody a little love before I decide who goes home heartbroken. If you don't like what I say, don't get mad, get better," he said.

In other changes for the new series, show bosses said that contestants would not be forced to stray from their favoured genre - country singers can sing country songs and rock singers would not have to sing folk songs.

There are also no plans to have celebrity mentors come on the show, as was common in previous years.

This year's American Idol finale was the lowest rated since the first series in 2002, with 24.2m tuning in to see former paint salesman Lee DeWyze take the crown.

But the programme remains the most-watched TV show in the US.

The new three judge panel sees the programme revert to its original format - when Jackson and Cowell were joined by singer and choreographer Paula Abdul.

The singing contest is expected to return to US television in January 2011. It is broadcast on ITV2 in the UK.

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