Idol announces new judge

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Ellen DeGeneres is dancing her way onto "American Idol," replacing Paula Abdul as the show's fourth judge.

In a Wednesday release from Fox and the show's producers, DeGeneres described herself as a longtime fan of the hit singing contest.

Abdul, who announced she was quitting the show amid a contract dispute, had been replaced by a succession of guest judges as "American Idol" started next season's auditions.

DeGeneres, host of a daytime talk show, wasn't among them. She will join Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi for the ninth season starting in January.