Pop Culture

‘X Factor’ could mark the spot for Paula Abdul

Paula Abdul’s professional future has been defined more by what she is not going to do than what she might be doing.

So far, a position hosting a new “Star Search” and a role in the Broadway show “In the Heights” have been nixed.

However, it's still possible that Abdul will join Simon Cowell’s “X Factor” when it comes to the U.S. in fall of 2011.

When asked about her future on that show, Abdul told reporters at Perez Hilton’s birthday party Saturday, “We’ll have to see about that.”

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    Paula Abdul, straight up

    Before her days as the “nice judge” on “American Idol,” she was a professional cheerleader, scored a string of pop hits and starred in a brief but bizarre reality show.

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    Straight up

    Paula Abdul once cheered for the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team, but then moved into choreography and a singing career of her own before taking a seat next to Simon Cowell at the "American Idol" judges' table.

    Everett Collection / Everett Collection
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    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    Forever your girl -- or not

    Abdul married actor Emilio Estevez in 1992 but they divorced just two years later. She later told People magazine that the split came because she wanted children and Estevez, already a father of two, did not. She went on to marry sportswear designer Brad Beckerman in 1996, but again, divorced just two years later.

    WireImage / WireImage
  • 1991 MTV Video Music Awards

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    She's got the vibe

    Abdul performs her song "Vibeology" at the 1991 MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles. Abdul was nominated for best female video for "Rush Rush" that year, but lost out to Janet Jackson's "Love Will Never Do (Without You)."

    Getty Images / Getty Images
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    It's all about the kids

    In 1993, Abdul and other singers, including Celine Dion and Bobby McFerrin, performed at "For Our Children," a live concert with proceeds benefiting the Pediatric AIDS Foundation. Abdul started off the concert singing a jazzy version of Disney's classic "Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah."

    Everett Collection / Everett Collection
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    Meet the Muppets

    Abdul is famed for performing with cartoon cat MC Skat Kat in her "Opposites Attract" video in 1989, so it perhaps wasn't much of a stretch for her to make an appearance on "Muppets Tonight" in 1996.

    Everett Collection / Everett Collection
  • FOX 2002 Summer TCA Tour - 7/22/02- American Idol

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    Dynamic trio

    When "American Idol" launched in 2002, Abdul was paired with sardonic Brit Simon Cowell, left, and affable music producer Randy Jackson, right, as one of the show's three judges. She quickly developed a reputation as the always-positive judge, and just as quickly began to draw attention for her sometimes bizarre and outlandish comments.

    Getty Images / Getty Images
  • Mercedes Benz Fashion Week - Petro Zillia Backstage

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    Gone to the dogs

    Abdul is seen hugging puppy Yoda at a fashion show in 2004. Abdul may be an animal lover, but in 2007, she broke her nose and toe when she tripped over her pet Chihuahua Tulip. Tulip was unhurt.

    Getty Images / Getty Images
  • YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund Honors Paula Abdul

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    Fashion plate

    Abdul arrives at the YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund AMY awards in 2006. Long interested in fashion, she started her own jewelry line on QVC in 2007, and often displayed her work on "American Idol," even offering pieces to the singers.

    Getty Images / Getty Images
  • Hey Paula

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    Star of her own show

    Abdul starred in a brief Bravo reality show called "Hey Paula" in 2007. The seven-episode show was panned by critics, who noted that Abdul came off as much less friendly than she does on "American Idol." One segment features the singer's emotional reaction to being fired from a movie based on the line of Bratz dolls, but Abdul later blamed creative editing for the way she appeared.

    Bravo via Everett Collection / Bravo via Everett Collection
  • 20th Annual Kids' Choice Awards - Show

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    Time for slime

    Abdul and fellow "Idol" judge Randy Jackson accept the favorite TV show award won by the show at the 2007 Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards. Despite -- or perhaps because of -- the numerous on- and off-set controversies, "American Idol" continues to dominate the Nielsen ratings.

    Getty Images / Getty Images
  • Gala Premiere Of "Criss Angel Believe" By Cirque Du Soleil

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    What happens in Vegas

    Abdul made an appearance at the gala premiere of Criss Angel Believe," a collaboration between illusionist Criss Angel and the acrobatic troupe Cirque du Soleil, at the Luxor Resort & Casino in 2008.

    Getty Images for Cirque du Solei / Getty Images for Cirque du Solei
  • Premiere Of Touchstone Pictures' "Swing Vote" - Arrivals

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    On the red carpet

    Abdul continues to make the rounds of Hollywood events. She's seen here arriving at the premiere of the film "Swing Vote" in Hollywood, Calif., in 2008.

    Getty Images / Getty Images
  • American Idol Season 8 Top 4 Performance

    Paula Abdul, straight up

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    Heating up the 'Idol' stage

    After scoring repeated hits from 1987-1996, the singer had seemingly put music on the back burner to pursue other interests. But in May 2009, Abdul performed her new single, "I'm Just Here for the Music," on an "American Idol" results show.

    Getty Images for Fox / Getty Images for Fox
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    Sitting next to her replacement?

    In January 2009, "American Idol" added a fourth judge, songwriter Kara DioGuardi, second from left. Many critics and fans speculated that DioGuardi was added to eventually replace Abdul, although the four judges worked together for the 2009 season without incident. In August 2009, Abdul and Fox confirmed that she would not return to the show.

    Fox / Fox

Abdul also let on that she’s watching “American Idol” this season.

A source at the party says that she could be overheard talking about being a fan of the show’s frontrunners Siobhan Magnus and Crystal Bowersox.

Gosselin’s ‘DWTS’ run could be shortIf Kate Gosselin’s debut performance on “Dancing with the Stars” didn’t leave you doubting her longevity on the show, then judge Bruno Tonioli’s remarks should have done the trick.

Tonioli likened Gosselin and partner Tony Dovolani’s Viennese waltz to a trip down aisle seven, saying, “It looked like Tony was pushing a shopping cart around the floor.”

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    ‘Dancing With the Stars’ 2010

    Pamela Anderson, Kate Gosselin, Buzz Aldrin, Evan Lysacek and more of the mirror ball hopefuls.

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    Pamela Anderson and Damian Whitwood

    Former "Baywatch" star Pamela Anderson will be filling the mom-in-her-40s role that the show always offers.

    ABC / ABC
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    Kate Gosselin and Tony Dovolani

    Mother of eight Kate Gosselin has lived her life in tabloid headlines recently, splitting from ex-husband Jon in a very public spat. Gosselin reportedly will rehearse for the show near her Pennsylvania home so she can be near her children.

    ABC / ABC
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    Chad Ochocinco and Cheryl Burke

    Chad Ochocinco of the Cincinnati Bengals loves the spotlight, and NFL fans are unusually good "Dancing" supporters. Other football players, including winner Emmitt Smith and finalist Jerry Rice, have done well on the show in the past.

    ABC / ABC
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    Nicole Scherzinger and Derek Hough

    Singer Nicole Scherzinger of The Pussycat Dolls has serious dancing and stage experience, which should make her another favorite to win it all.

    ABC / ABC
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    Shannen Doherty and Mark Ballas

    Shannen Doherty's "Beverly Hills, 90210" character, Brenda Walsh, was so polarizing that there once was a zine called "I Hate Brenda" in her honor. Doherty's ex-husband, Ashley Hamilton, lasted just three days on "Dancing" last season.

    ABC / ABC
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    Erin Andrews and Maksim Chmerkovskiy

    ESPN sportscaster Erin Andrews was a blog favorite even before her privacy was invaded via a peephole camera spying on her while she changed clothes in a hotel room. She's got the looks, but can she dance?

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    Buzz Aldrin and Ashley DelGrosso Costa

    Can a former astronaut still fly? Buzz Aldrin, the second man on the moon, will orbit the floor on "Dancing With the Stars."

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    Niecy Nash and Louis Van Amstel

    Niecy Nash stars on "Reno 911!" and also hosts "Clean House" on the Style network.

    ABC / ABC
  • ‘Dancing With the Stars’ 2010

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    Evan Lysacek and Anna Trebunskaya

    Figure skater Evan Lysacek is fresh off his gold-medal win at the Vancouver Winter Games. His years of choreography and training make him the early favorite to win it all.

    ABC / ABC
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    Jake Pavelka and Chelsie Hightower

    Pilot Jake Pavelka is fresh off his season as "The Bachelor," where he horrified many viewers by proposing to Vienna Giraldi, who was disliked by the other women on the show.

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    Aiden Turner and Edyta Sliwinska

    "All My Children" star Aiden Turner is probably the least-known of this season's contestants, and could be in trouble unless he wins fans early.

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That wasn’t lost on Gosselin, who is wondering about her fate as week two of the show begins. “I hope I’m not one of the first to go,” she told People magazine. “I really like it here. You become close to everyone so fast.”

Gosselin’s admission that she’s become close to the competition flies in the face of claims that the mom of eight has been standoffish and distant with her fellow “DWTS” castmates.

“She’s totally getting along with the other people on the show,” said a source close to Gosselin. “People who say otherwise just like to hate on her.”

‘Dragon’ wins, but doesn’t slay box office“How to Train Your Dragon,” did top the weekend box office, but its performance was not as impressive as other recent 3-D openings.

“Dragon” brought in $43.3 million, which is $16 million less than what “Monsters Vs. Aliens” made this time last year, and on fewer 3-D screens. “Alice in Wonderland,” was No. 2 and made $17.3 million; the other big newcomer, “Hot Tub Time Machine” came in the third spot, and made a$17.3 million, which is something of a disappointment for the studio.

Courtney Hazlett delivers the Scoop Monday through Friday on msnbc.com. Follow Scoop on Twitter @courtneyatmsnbc

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