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‘American Idol’ Reacts to Kelly Clarkson Mentoring on ‘The Voice’

Jennifer Lopez, Kelly Clarkson, Christina Aguilera
Frederick M. Brown / Jemal Countess / Frederick M. Brown, Getty Images

After ‘The Voice‘ mentors shared their choice words about the music industry, their biggest competition voiced their opinions as well. The ‘American Idol‘ team took a dig at the NBC show — while simultaneously saying Kelly Clarkson‘s guest mentor stint was flattering for their own series.

“It’s a compliment to ’Idol’,” Fox president of alternative entertainment Mike Darnell told E! Online. “Other shows want to use our stars for their shows. We’re not hiring a lot of people from ‘The Voice’ to be on our show.” How about some aloe for that burn?

Darnell wasn’t alone in his sentiments about ‘The Voice.’ Executive producer Ken Warwick added more fuel to the fire, saying, ”This is the show that produces the stars,” and referred to ‘X Factor U.K.’ winner Leona Lewis a “one-and-a-half-hit wonder.” Considering how huge Lewis is in her native U.K., we’ll chalk Warwick’s comment to ignorance of her record sales across the pond.

Fellow ‘American Idol’ executive producer Cecile Frot-Coutaz wasn’t impressed with the audition process for ‘The Voice.’  “Their auditions are not an open call like us,” she said. “They cast their show.”

The judges got in on the action, too. Randy Jackson pointed out that last season’s winner of ‘The Voice,’ Javier Colon, was once signed to Capitol Records. Jackson remarked, “It’s like second-chance theater over there.” Ouch!

Of course, the press wasn’t going to let those remarks go without stoking the fire. A reporter responded to the criticisms of ‘The Voice’ by pointing out that Scotty McCreery isn’t “coming out of the gate.” However, fellow judge Jennifer Lopez came to the country crooner’s defense and made a good point of her own. “These kids are just starting out,” Lopez said. “Give them a chance. Scotty is platinum! [A long career] takes time.”

For its part, ‘The Voice’ as a whole hasn’t taken any digs at ‘Idol’ recently, though mentor Adam Levine blasted the show for keeping its contestants in the closet.

What sparked all the comparisons? A reporter at the press junket brought up Clarkson’s guest mentor stint on ‘The Voice’ during an ‘American Idol’ chat.

As we previously reported, Clarkson will be a guest mentor on ‘The Voice,’ lending a hand to her close friend, coach Blake Shelton. The ‘American Idol’ victor will appear on an episode airing this spring and is excited about the opportunity. “The thing I love about ‘The Voice’ is that they’re more mentors — they’re not judges,” Clarkson said of the ‘A.I.’ rival. “I would never really want to be a judge, just because I don’t want to break people’s hearts.”

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