Appearing together in the semi-annual meeting of the Television Critics' Association, newest "American Idol" judges Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj played nice onstage after their much-publicized feud during the auditions for the show's twelfth season. Joining the two divas were new judge Keith Urban and veteran judge (since season one) Randy Jackson, and host Ryan Seacrest, who's been hosting the show since day 1.
Last year, a video of the two new "Idol" judges arguing leaked online, with the 30-year-old Minaj reportedly threatening the 42-year-old Carey, saying, "If I had a gun, I would shoot that b****." The two now downplay the hostility as a mere passionate disagreement stemming from their different opinions about the contestants in the hit TV singing competition.
Carey, who hired more bodyguards after that incident, told reporters that it was now time to shift the focus from the two raging divas to the aspiring "Idols". "The fighting is what it is. This is 'American Idol.' It is bigger than some stupid trumped-up thing. It's about the next superstar ... The whole thing is convoluted. It's a distraction from the show and the contestants," Carey explained.
The two barely looked at each other as they sang praises of the other, with Minaj calling Carey "one of her favorite artists of all time." They have actually, surprisingly, worked together on an album track back in 2009.
The high-rating Fox show returns to TV screens on January 16, following the departure of Jennifer Lopez and Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler, increasing the number of judges to 4 from the original format of 3 to keep in step with the format of other popular TV singing contests such as "The Voice", "The X Factor" and "America's Got Talent". The growing competition saw a decline in "Idol" 's usual 30 million plus viewers a couple of years back down to 20 million last season.