Having engaged in battles with Clay Aiken and Donald Trump, Rosie O’Donnell is now taking on American Idol, and the show’s producer has responded.
On The View today, Rosie said that FOX has denied the daytime ABC show the right to broadcast clips from Idol, and she says that’s because she criticized the talent competition. “We’re no longer given access to ‘American Idol’ (video) clips. They’re apparently mad at us … When I say ‘us,’ I really mean me,” Rosie said, according to the CBS’ Showbuzz. “It started with the two special-ed boys and then my concern about Paula (Abdul’s) possible non-attentiveness and then saying that I thought it was sexist or racist and weight-ist that they put Frenchie (Davis) off and not Antonella (Barba).”
Barbara Walters said Rosie should have expected the response, saying, “don’t insult them with your left hand and ask for favors with the right hand.”
In a statement, American Idol executive producer Nigel Lythgoe didn’t really address her comments about the double-standard between Frenchie and Antonella, saying, “Without wishing to add to the obvious self-promotion of Ms. O’Donnell, I feel as though I must refute her absurd and ridiculous claims that American Idol is racist and/or weightist. Ms. O’Donnell has, once again, spoken without thought or knowledge. Viewers need only look at the show tonight to realize that American Idol constantly confirms to America that talent has nothing to do with weight or color.”