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Paula Abdul sues ‘American Idol’ executive Nigel Lythgoe for sexual assault

Paula Abdul was sexually assaulted multiple times by former American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance producer Nigel Lythgoe, according to a lawsuit filed Friday in Los Angeles. He was accused of

According to the complaint, Mr. Abdul, 61, received a commission from Mr. Lithgow, 74, on one of the “early seasons” of “American Idol” and on “So You Think You Can Dance” in 2014. She claims that she was sexually assaulted while serving as a judge. Obtained by The Post.

Lithgow produced “American Idol” at the height of its popularity in the 2000s, and was last named as a producer on the talent-based singing show in 2014.

From 2005 to 2014, Lithgow was credited as the producer and co-creator of “So You Think You Can Dance.”

Abdul claims that Lithgow committed the first sexual assault in a hotel elevator during the audition stage of an early season of American Idol.

“Ms. Lithgow pushed Ms. Abdul against the wall, grabbed her genitals and breasts, and began pushing her tongue down her throat,” the complaint alleges.

Lithgow produced American Idol at the height of its popularity in the 2000s. (709)

“Abdul tried to pull Lithgow away from her. When the elevator door to her home opened, Ms. Abdul jumped out of the elevator and headed for her hotel room. Ms. Abdul immediately cried out to one of the agents. I called and told them about the assault.”

Ms Abdul claimed she had remained silent about the allegations out of fear of retaliation from Mr Lithgow, and claimed Mr Lithgow had the power to remove her from her role as a judge on the show.

In the second assault charge, Abdul alleges that he sexually assaulted Lithgow at his home after inviting her to dinner in 2014.

Nigel Lythgoe is the producer of “American Idol'' and “So You Think You Can Dance,'' and Abdul was a judge on both shows. Getty Images

“Mr. Abdul accepted this invitation, believing it to be a professional one,” the suit states.

“Toward the end of the night, while Abdul was sitting on the couch, Lithgow forced himself on top of Abdul and attempted to kiss him, declaring that they would make a great 'power couple,'” the suit alleges. are doing.

“Abdul pushed Lithgow away, explained that she was not interested in his advances, and immediately left.”

(LR) Lithgow, Abdul, Maddie Ziegler and Jason Derulo on the season finale of So You Think You Can Dance on September 12, 2026.

The “Cold Hearted” singer, who still fears Lithgow's power as an executive, once again insisted he was keeping quiet about the assault allegations for fear of being “blamed” if he spoke up.

Abdul alleges that she witnessed Lithgow sexually assault one of her assistants (named “April” in the lawsuit) while filming the movie So You Think You Can Dance in 2015.

Lithgow “approached Abdul and April from behind, pressed his body against April, and began groping her. April did not consent,” the lawsuit alleged.

The suit also alleges that Hollywood executives allegedly teased Mr. Abdul over the phone about his inappropriate behavior.

“Lithgow knew that his treatment of Abdul was inappropriate and even criminal,” the complaint states.

Ms Abdul claimed she had remained silent about the allegations out of fear of retaliation from Mr Lithgow, and claimed Mr Lithgow had the power to remove her from her role as a judge on the show. Reuters
The lawsuit also includes the show's producers American Idol Productions, Dance Nation Productions, 19 Entertainment and FremantleMedia North America. ©20thCentFox/Courtesy of Everett

“In fact, at one point, Lithgow called Abdul and berated her, telling her that it was time to celebrate because 'seven years have passed and the statute of limitations has run.' He clearly knew that he had the power to silence her.”

The suit also alleges that Lithgow “verbally insulted and belittled” Abdul when he met with executives about the launch of “American Idol” in 2001, telling Abdul that he “was” a member of the music industry. “The cast of the show probably don't know about it,'' he was quoted as saying. ”

The “Knocked Out” singer is suing Lithgow for sexual assault and battery, sexual harassment, gender violence and negligence.

Lithgow was last named as a producer on a talent-based singing show in 2014.

The newspaper has contacted Mr Lithgow's representatives for comment.

Production companies American Idol Productions, Dance Nation Productions, 19 Entertainment and FremantleMedia North America were also named as defendants in the suit.

The lawsuit comes as a number of celebrities have filed sexual abuse lawsuits after New York and California passed laws temporarily waiving the statute of limitations for sexual abuse lawsuits.

Sean “Diddy” Combs, Axl Rose, and Jermaine Jackson have also been sued over sexual assault allegations in the past few months.

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