Katy Perry quits ‘American Idol’ after 7 seasons and plenty of fan backlash over the years

Katy Perry announced Monday that she’s departing “American Idol” after seven seasons.

“This fall, in September, I’m going to be doing this huge music festival in Brazil called Rock in Rio… so I think this will probably be my last season for ‘Idol,’” Perry said on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” to a shocked audience.

“I mean, I love ‘Idol’ so much,” she continued. “It’s connected me with the heart of America, but I need to feel that pulse of my own beat.”

The “Last Friday Night” singer, 39, appeared on the late-night show to promote the singing competition series’ upcoming 22nd season.

Perry joined the judges’ panel for the show’s 16th season in March 2018 when ABC revived it after a years-long run on Fox.

The “Never Really Over” songstress has worked alongside fellow judges Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie since she signed on.

When host Kimmel, 56, asked, “What did Luke and Lionel say” about her exit, Perry replied, “Well, they’ll find out tonight!”

“I mean, I love ‘Idol’ so much,” she said on the late-night show. “It’s connected me with the heart of America, but I need to feel that pulse of my own beat.” ABC
The “Never Really Over” singer also shared that she’ll be participating in the Rock in Rio music festival in Brazil this fall. Disney

Perry’s run on “Idol” has not been without its controversies. The pop star actually took a hiatus from the show last year after fan outcry over her harsh criticisms about contestants.

She initially came under fire for joking that contestant Sara Beth Liebe had been “laying on the table too much” upon hearing the young singer already had three kids.

She suggested that he co-judges, Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan, would find out about her departure upon watching the late-night show. ABC

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“It was embarrassing to have that on TV, and it was hurtful,” Liebe, who ultimately quit “Idol” to care for her children, said in a TikTok video after her viral episode aired in early 2023.

“I think that women supporting and uplifting other women is so cool and I think that mom-shaming is super lame and I think that it’s hard enough to be a mom and it’s hard enough to be a woman.”

The “I Kissed a Girl” performer was also booed for criticizing another competitor’s glittery costume.

Perry came under fire multiple times over the course of her tenure on “Idol,” as viewers found she was “bullying” contestants. ABC

While Perry didn’t address the hot water in which she frequently found herself, fellow judge Bryan came to her defense.

“Katy gets picked on for going out and trying to have fun making a TV show,” Bryan, 47, said at the Country Music Association Fest in June 2023.

“You can’t be so safe in the moment that you’re so homogenized, you can’t ever go for a joke or go for a fun moment.”

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