ENTERTAINMENT

Jennifer Lopez on 'American Idol' ending: 'I have not come to terms with that yet'

Jennifer Lopez said she not yet ready to say good-bye to “American Idol” after four seasons on the talent contest.

Speaking to reporters backstage after the first leg of the show’s Season 14 finale on Tuesday, Lopez opened up about her reaction to the show ending.

“Do I believe that it’s really ended? I have not come to terms with that yet,” the 45-year-old told People. “I’m glad that we get to have a farewell season – if that is the case and it will be over next year.”

Lopez, who announced her Las Vegas residency during Tuesday night’s show, first joined the judges’ panel for seasons 10 and 11 before returning for seasons 13 and 14.

Fox announced Monday that it was lowering the curtain on “American Idol” after its 15th season next spring.

“It was not an easy decision. ‘American Idol’ has been such a vital part of Fox for its run,” said Gary Newman, Fox Television Group co-chairman and CEO.

"American Idol" faded over the past few years, eclipsed in the music competition genre it pioneered by NBC's "The Voice." Personnel changes didn't help, and neither did tinkering with the format, as the show fell victim to what usually kills off most television series — old age.

Fox and the show's producers were discussing how the series would continue, but ultimately "we all arrived at the conclusion that it was time to bring the show to an end," said Newman. "But we wanted to do it in a way that was special and celebratory."

"Idol" was a quick hit, with fans following contestants who sought the prized "yellow ticket" to Hollywood and a chance at stardom. In the early years, "American Idol" also showed many of the cringe-worthy auditions of contestants with no hope of winning, but has generally resisted those recently.

Lopez’s fellow judge Harry Connick Jr., 47, said that while it’s bittersweet to say good-bye, he his grateful to be a part of it.

“I’ve been a fan of this show for a long time and when they asked me to be a mentor a few years back, I was thrilled,” he told People. “And when they asked me to be a judge I was even more excited because I felt like I was a part of something truly phenomenal and historic.”

He added: “As bittersweet as it is, I really feel that I’m a part of something on a small level for me that is unforgettable.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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