Paula Abdul might have some serious competition as resident diva on The X Factor. And no, we're not talking about fellow judge Nicole Scherzinger. Rumors are swirling that music superstar (and new mama) Mariah Carey is considering a role as mentor on Simon Cowell's highly anticipated Fox reality competition series.
"Mariah and Simon are great friends, and now [that] she has had her babies, it's very possible that she will be involved [in] some way in the later stages of the show," spilled an X Factor insider to Aceshowbiz.
When potential judge gossip was at its highest, Mariah's name was tossed around. However, since she was (seemingly eternally) pregnant with twins, she "politely declined" a full-time judging gig. Twins Moroccan and Monroe will be a less than six months old when The X Factor premieres September 21, but Mariah isn't one to stay away from the spotlight.
One person who certainly hopes Mariah joins The X Factor this fall is Simon himself. In fact, he may even have a little crush on the singer.
"I think Mariah will have a role on the TV live shows," Simon said. "And her idea was to be the judge of the judges, which only Mariah could come up with. She'll be involved in some form. I literally adore her. I love her to bits."
Is it true? Consider this: Mariah is rumored to return to Sony Music in 2012, having left after her divorce from ex-Sony head Tommy Mottola in 2000. Sony is the new home of her collaborator and close friend L.A. Reid, who — along with being an X Factor judge — is the chairman and CEO of Sony label Epic Records. On top of that, The X Factor's winner will score a deal with Sony.
Adding credence to the rumor, Mariah was recently spotted in New York City accompanied by two personal trainers — and with a trimmer post baby bod. Is she readying her famous figure for a return to the limelight? We think yes.
Do you think Mariah is a good fit for The X Factor?
Sources: Aceshowbiz, MTV.com, ThatGrapeJuice.net