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Image: Simon Cowell
Jason Decrow  /  AP
Would "American Idol" be the same without sharp-tongued judge Simon Cowell?
By The Scoop
msnbc.com
updated 12/19/2008 9:06:54 AM ET 2008-12-19T14:06:54

When “American Idol” executive producer Ken Warwick held a conference call with the press earlier in the week, he spent much of it reiterating that he wanted Paula Abdul to stay on the show.

Turns out that reporters on the call really should have been asking not about Abdul, but about Simon Cowell.

“I'll make a decision about (whether to stay with the show) next year," Cowell said Dec. 17 in his own call with reporters. His inclination to make a call about staying with the show doesn’t come from personality conflict as much as it does workload, however. "This show could continue for another 10 years,” he conceded.

Cowell also backed up Warwick's earlier statement that the show wasn’t aware of how troubled Paula Goodspeed really was. Goodspeed, of course, is the woman who auditioned for "Idol" and recently killed herself outside judge Paula Abdul's house. Abdul has said show producers knew the woman was stalking her and let her audition anyway, but Cowell says that the producers have been portrayed unfairly.

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“These guys have the utmost integrity as human beings," Cowell said. "(The judges) wouldn't work with (the producers) if they were the kind of people who would deliberately do something like that. We've taken them on their word that they didn't know this person was as troubled as she was.”

Strike wouldn’t affect SAG awards
SAG president Alan Rosenberg assuaged fears that a SAG strike could cancel the Jan. 25 SAG awards, telling People magazine “(The strike) is not going to affect our show.”

He added that SAG doesn’t “know whether we’ll go on strike or not” but that “people shouldn’t worry about it.”

Slideshow: Celebrity Sightings Shouldn’t worry about it? Perhaps we’re misinterpreting Rosenberg’s comments, but “shouldn’t worry about it” seems like a pretty cavalier attitude toward a potential work outage that could have an impact far beyond the cancellation of an awards show.

Rosenberg went on to downplay the impact of the possible strike authorization, ballots for which go out Jan. 2, saying, “Nothing unusual about it. Nothing radical about it. We need this tool to get the employers to come back to the table and do us some good faith, which they haven’t done since the beginning of these negotiations.”

More kids for McConaughey?
Cue the bongos: Matthew McConaughey is ready for another baby.

Although he and girlfriend Camila Alves welcomed Levi into the world just six months ago, In Touch is reporting “Matt would love to have more babies, but Camila wants to hold off a bit.”

Camila recently told the magazine, “after 60 hours of labor, I’m taking it one day at a time.”

Derek and Minka are house hunting
"Friday Night Lights" star Minka Kelly and Yankee Derek Jeter have done their best to keep their romance — which began in the middle of 2008 — under the radar.

But according to an “insider” who spoke to In Touch magazine, the couple is looking for a home in the L.A. area.

“They’re serious but very private,” the magazine reports. “Derek stays at Minka’s condo when he’s in town, but it’s pretty tiny so they need more space, and that’s why they’re house shopping.”

Weekend box office
The 2008 box-office season is coming down to the wire, and this weekend isn’t going to make keeping The Scoop's near-perfect prediction record easy.

Three big releases hit theaters.

“Seven Pounds,” starring Will Smith, is getting panned by critics. Given the fact that “Yes Man” (with Jim Carrey) is earning mostly positive reviews, I think you can give Carrey the win over Smith.

That leaves the family-friendly, animated “Tale of Despereaux,” which opens in more than 3,000 theaters. But at the end of the day, I have to say "Yes" to “Yes Man.”

More on Simon Cowell | 'American Idol'

Courtney Hazlett delivers the Scoop Monday through Friday on msnbc.com.

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