Paula Abdul Fired from 'X Factor'

Fox Television's Judge Paula Abdul poses at Fox Television's "The X Factor" Season Finale at CBS Televison City on December 22, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Getty Images)more pics » Paula Abdul (Getty Images) Paula Abdul will not be returning to X Factor for its second season, Deadline reports. Abdul, along withher fellow judge Nicole Scherzinger and X Factor host Steve Jones, have all been fired from the reality singing competition by executive producer Simon Cowell.

The firings of Steve Jones and Nicole Scherzinger are both no surprise, but the ousting of Cowell's longtime friend and fellow American Idol judge Paula Abdul is a pretty big shocker. Fox has confirmed the departures of Scherzinger and Jones, who were both routinely maligned by critics, but the network has not yet commented on Abdul's dismissal. The mass upheaval makes music producer L.A. Reid and Cowell himself the bloodbath's sole survivors.

Part of the reason for Abdul's firing may have been that she proved a less than stellar mentor for the X Factor's three finalist groups, who were all among the first competitors to be booted from the competition. The notoriously loopy judge also offered little in the way of concrete advice for contestants, which should have come as no surprise to the man who sat next to her on the Idol judging panel for many years.

The massive upheaval leaves room for a new judge (or two), which is something that Simon Cowell is probably already thinking about. Who do you think should be the next X Factor judge? Vote below or sound off in the comments with your own suggestions!

Poll: Who should be the new 'X Factor' judge?
Click to vote:
  • Madonna
  • Taylor Swift
  • Nicki Minaj
  • Selena Gomez
  • Blue Ivy Carter

UPDATE: Paula Abdul has confirmed her firing via a statement to Entertainment Weekly:
Yes, it’s true; I won’t be returning to The X Factor next season.  I’ve learned through my longevity in this industry that business decisions often times override personal considerations.  Simon and I, along with Fox and Fremantle, have been communicating about this for a while now, and I have absolute understanding of the situation.  Simon is, and will remain a dear friend of mine and I’ve treasured my experience working this past season with my extended family at Fox and Fremantle. I want nothing more than for The X Factor to exceed ALL of their wildest dreams.  This truly has been a blessing and I am most grateful.”
See more Paula Abdul photos:
  • Paula Abdul in Fox Television&squot;s "The X Factor" Season Finale -  Arrivals
  • Paula Abdul in Fox Television&squot;s "The X Factor" Season Finale -  Arrivals
  • Paula Abdul in Fox Television&squot;s "The X Factor" Season Finale -  Arrivals
  • Paula Abdul in Fox Television&squot;s "The X Factor" Season Finale -  Arrivals
  • Paula Abdul in Fox Television&squot;s "The X Factor" Season Finale -  Arrivals
  • Paula Abdul in Fox Television&squot;s "The X Factor" Season Finale -  Arrivals
  • Paula Abdul in Fox Television&squot;s "The X Factor" Season Finale -  Arrivals
  • Paula Abdul in Fox Television&squot;s "The X Factor" Season Finale -  Arrivals
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