Jennifer Hudson is joining American Idol as a judge next season. E! News reports that “multiple sources confirm” the deal has been signed, making Hudson the first former contestant to return to the show in a judging capacity. FOX is wisely trying for an Idol alum theme to draw in once-loyal viewers after the massive ratings drop for season 12: as reported earlier this week, Kelly Clarkson, Adam Lambert and Clay Aiken are also in the running for the remaining two judging spots for season 13, and E! says Clarkson is close to inking a deal for one of those judges’ chairs.
FOX has yet to comment on the reports.