By People Staff
Updated August 06, 2009 12:00 AM
Credit: Michael Becker/American Idol/Getty

Now that Paula Abdul announced that she’s leaving American Idol, what will she do next?

While Abdul is filming another guest-starring role on an episode of Lifetime’s Drop Dead Gorgeous, FOX executives spoke at a Television Critics’ Association panel on Thursday in Los Angeles, saying Abdul’s judging days are far from over — she may just scoot over to another show — and that there’s even still a chance she could return to Idol.

When asked if he would like Abdul to be a judge on So You Think You Can Dance, executive producer Nigel Lythgoe told reporters, “Absolutely there’s no question about that. I don’t know anyone who’s had her experience. I’ve been trying to get her since season one.”

In fact, Lythgoe isn’t wasting any time. “I spoke to her yesterday morning. We didn’t talk about the negotiations. That’s a private issue,” he said. “We’re going to Vegas for season six this weekend and she’s coming out to meet me and we’re going to talk about what opportunities are out there.”

Lythgoe, who is also a judge on the dance competition, wasn’t completely convinced that Abdul was done with Idol. “I still don’t know that she’s going to leave Idol,” he said. “Until Idol goes on the air there’s always the opportunity for negotiations.”

However, FOX chairman Peter Rice later told reporters that he was sad to see Abdul go but said, “Our understanding is we have concluded the negotiation and Paula will not be returning to the show.”

Rice also confirmed that Victoria Beckham will be a guest judge and that he was in talks with other female celebrities, including Katy Perry, to fill in during the auditions. –Monica Rizzo and Shawna MalcomM Becker/American Idol/Getty