Kelly Clarkson on American Idol

FOX made an exciting announcement for Kelly Clarkson fans Friday (Jan. 15) — the Season 1 winner, who has gone on to an award-winning career full of smash hits, is returning as a guest judge for the final season.

In front of the 2016 TCA winter press tour audience, FOX revealed that Clarkson is going to be present to judge and perform live during the Top 10 performances/results on Feb. 25.

“We’ve invited her to part of this season and she’s really happy to be,” says “Idol” executive producer Trish Kinane. “She will be a guest judge on our first live Top 10 show and she’ll also perform.”

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The producers also revealed that they’re trying to work out a way to have her at the finale, but that is right around when Clarkson is due to give birth to her second child, so it may not be feasible.

One person fans can look forward to for the finale is former fan-favorite judge, Simon Cowell — probably. The music/TV mogul is quite busy, between “America’s Got Talent,” “Britain’s Got Talent” and the U.K. “X Factor,” so Kinane says, “I think the most we can expect is for Simon to be at the finale.”

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."