Harry Connick Jr. in Talks to Join ‘American Idol’ Judges’ Panel

Harry Connick Jr. on "American Idol" (Photo: Fox)

After Harry Connick Jr.’s impressive appearance this week as the musical mentor on “American Idol,” producers are considering keeping the singer-actor around on a full-time basis.

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Connick confirmed to reporters Thursday night backstage after the results show that he’s been approached by “Idol” producers to potentially join the judges’ panel next season.

“They wanted to know if I would be interested,” Connick revealed, according to E! Online. “It’s a fun show… What I’ve done thus far on the show has been really fun, so I’ve had a great time.”

“It’s been talked about before, who knows what’ll happen in the future,” he added, referring to his previous guest mentoring stint on the talent competition in Season 9. That was when “Idol” producers reportedly first eyed Connick for the job during the last judging panel shake-up.

“The last time I was here, I was so flattered that they were kind of talking about it,” Connick said, “and it didn’t work out. There were a lot of things going on on their side and a lot of things going on on my side with just stuff. It’s hard to make a commitment like that.”

Recap: Emotional “Idol” Elimination Leaves Three Contenders

The New Orleans singer does have a lot on his plate — his new album comes out June 11 — but a crooner like Connick could be just what “Idol” needs to class up the place.

xfinityTV’s “Idol” expert Sharyn Jackson was impressed with Connick’s guest mentoring this week on the show, despite his heated words with Randy Jackson during Wednesday’s live show. She writes, “Harry Connick Jr., who maybe wasn’t the obvious choice for 2013 songs, … was exactly what these girls needed for the classics. In both rounds, he gave amazing advice. And in both rounds, no one listened.”

We’ll just have to wait and see whether or not Connick ends up as a new “AI” judge, but one thing’s for sure: producers have a lot of hot seats to fill on that judges’ panel. Between this season’s disappointing ratings, and that diva-dissing feud, it’s very unlikely that Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj OR Keith Urban will be back next season.

We’re now down to the Final Three as the show gets set to name the next “American Idol” on the Season 12 finale on May 16.

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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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