Kelly Clarkson denies speculation she will replace Katy Perry on American Idol

Kelly Clarkson has squashed fan hopes that she’ll take Katy Perry’s slot on the American Idol judging panel, after revealing a promise made to her children.

The talk show host and American Idol’s first winner was at the top of many people’s lists when considering a replacement judge for Perry, who departed the show after seven seasons last month.

However, Clarkson, 42, will not be returning to the franchise as she has promised her children that she’d spend less time working away from home.

“I can’t do that, only because I promised my kids. I was like, ‘I wanna be there as much as I possibly can,’” Clarkson said in an interview with Entertainment Tonight on Friday (7 June) at the Daytime Emmy Awards.

“And it would put me in LA, and that’s why I had to quit The Voice, which I love that team. And I miss them so much.”

The “Breakaway” and “Since U Been Gone” singer was a coach on nine seasons of the chair-turning singing show, before leaving after its 23rd run in 2023.

Though The Voice films in LA, Clarkson’s children live on the East Coast. To ease juggling work and seeing her children, the singer left LA for New York late last year, bringing her self-titled talk show with her.

Talking about her new life pace, Clarkson continued: “I wanted a life for us. And we enjoy the park every day, and we enjoy each other.

Kelly Clarkson and Katy Perry (Getty)
Kelly Clarkson and Katy Perry (Getty)

“As a parent – people get this – you only get so much time until they don’t want to hang out with you. That’s the reason [I can’t do American Idol]. It’s my kiddos,” Clarkson said.

The Kelly Clarkson Show won Outstanding Daytime Talk series for the fourth consecutive year at the 2024 Daytime Emmys, marking an impressive eight wins since its 2019 debut.

Perry announced that she was leaving American Idolduring an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! in February.

She joined the programme alongside Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan in 2018, when the show was brought back from cancellation on its new network, ABC.

Her exit marks the first time that the judging lineup of the show has change since its revival.

Previous iterations of the show have included figures such as Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez, Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr on the judging panel.