New 'American Idol' team dealing with disagreements, judges' passion
BY LYNN ELBER Associated Press
Wednesday, January 09, 2013
1/09/13 at 3:02 AM
PASADENA, Calif. - Five minutes into their season-opening news conference and the new team at "American Idol" was having its first disagreement - about its disagreements. Then Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj kept it going.
"We're professionals. Have you ever had an argument with someone you've worked with?" Minaj said after repeated questions Tuesday about her reported feud with new fellow judge Carey.
"This was sort of one-sided," interjected Carey, wearing a queenly smile.
"No, it wasn't," Minaj snapped back.
Fox network executive Mike Darnell was asked by reporters with the Television Critics Association if the clash was authentic. He said there was a lot of musical passion within the group, which also includes country star Keith Urban and returning judge Randy Jackson, and that triggered disagreements.
"The fighting is what it is," Carey said at one point. "This is 'American Idol.' It's bigger than all that. It's bigger than some stupid trumped-up thing."
Reports that the two divas were at odds surfaced last fall. On "The View," Barbara Walters recounted a phone conversation with Carey in which the pop star said that Minaj threatened to shoot her after a taping. The rapper quickly responded with dismissive tweets.
Trumped up or not, she and Minaj appeared on the panel with Urban carefully placed between them and indulged in their briefly testy "one-sided" exchange. But they also responded to a request to say something nice about each other.
Minaj called Carey one of her favorite all-time artists who has shaped a generation of singers. In return, Carey fondly recalled working with Minaj on a single titled - "ironically," as Carey noted - "Up Out My Face."
"I knew she was going to go far, and still is," Carey said.
"American Idol" begins its 12th season Wednesday facing questions once again about its ability to endure as a top-rated show, especially given the increasingly crowded talent show landscape that includes NBC's hit "The Voice." All of the shows are down in the ratings, Darnell noted.
Original Print Headline: New 'Idol' judges clash on 'trumped up' feuds
Mariah Carey (left), Keith Urban and Nicki Minaj from "American Idol" talk about their disagreements at their season-opening news conference. TODD WILLIAMSON / Invision / AP