Paula Abdul sues ‘American Idol’ producer Nigel Lythgoe in sexual assault


Paula Abdul accused “American Idol” and “So You Assume You Can Dance” govt producer Nigel Lythgoe of sexual assault in a lawsuit filed Friday in Los Angeles.

Abdul, who appeared as a choose on “American Idol” from 2002-09 and on dance competitors “SYTYCD” from 2015-16, alleges that boss and on-air co-star Lythgoe sexually assaulted her twice throughout her tenures on his exhibits, in response to a number of reviews. She additionally alleges that she suffered bullying and harassment and gender pay discrimination whereas serving as a outstanding public face of the hit exhibits.

In response to the swimsuit, the primary alleged assault occurred in a lodge elevator within the 2000s whereas Abdul, 61, and Lythgoe, 74, had been on the highway filming an early season of “American Idol,” Deadline reported. Abdul alleges that the manager producer “shoved her towards a wall, grabbed her genitals and breasts, and started shoving his tongue down her throat” earlier than she escaped and reported the incident to her representatives.

The second assault is alleged to have occurred in 2015 when Abdul appeared as a Season 12 choose on “So You Assume You Can Dance” alongside govt producer and co-creator Lythgoe. Abdul alleges that she was invited to what she believed was knowledgeable dinner at Lythgoe’s house, just for Lythgoe to power himself on her as she sat on his sofa earlier than she pushed him off and fled.

Abdul alleges that she moreover witnessed Lythgoe grope her assistant with out her consent throughout filming of “So You Assume You Can Dance” that 12 months, in response to Selection, and that she feared retaliation ought to she communicate out. In response to the lawsuit, Abdul’s contracts on the exhibits barred her from disclosing confidential or derogatory details about different judges, hosts or producers.

The lawsuit names as defendants Lythgoe and manufacturing corporations 19 Leisure, FremantleMedia North America, American Idol Productions and Dance Nation Productions on counts of sexual assault/battery, sexual harassment, gender violence and negligence.

“Without end Your Lady” singer, dancer and choreographer Abdul rose to fame within the Nineteen Eighties earlier than constructing a second profession in TV together with her standard appearances on exhibits together with “American Idol,” “So You Assume You Can Dance” and “Dancing With the Stars.” In 2009, the veteran choose introduced her departure from “Idol” following reviews of pressure amid contractual negotiations over her compensation.

Abdul’s lawsuit was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courtroom below this 12 months’s Sexual Abuse and Cowl Up Accountability Act, which permits restricted home windows for sure civil sexual abuse claims in any other case outdoors of the statute of limitations to be filed. Representatives for Abdul and Lythgoe didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark.

Different latest high-profile lawsuits filed below the act have levied sexual assault allegations towards Jermaine Jackson and former Recording Academy chief Mike Greene. Sean “Diddy” Combs, Antonio “L.A.” Reid and Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler have been sued below an analogous New York regulation.


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