Paula Abdul Sues ‘American Idol’ Producer Lythgoe for Alleged Sexual Assault


  • A lawsuit was filed against Nigel Lythgoe, a famous producer of TV talent shows, claiming an alleged sexual assault on Abdul, a renowned singer.
  • The alleged assault took place in an elevator after a day of auditions for “American Idol” in its early seasons.
  • Lythgoe has categorically denied these allegations.
  • Abdul also alleges another assault on a subordinate-event during the filming of “So You Think You Can Dance.”
  • The lawsuit has been filed just before the deadline under California’s Sexual Abuse and Cover-Up Accountability Act.

Abdul’s Shocking Allegations Against Lythgoe

Abdul, a well-known singer since the late 1980s, accused Lythgoe of sexually assaulting her in an elevator during the initial seasons of “American Idol,” according to a lawsuit lodged in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Friday. Lythgoe, renowned for producing numerous hit television talent contests, is alleged to have groped Abdul’s breasts and genitals, in addition to other unwelcome physical advances in a hotel elevator after the end of “American Idol” auditions. Court records state Abdul pushed him away and fled as soon as the elevator doors opened.

Lythgoe’s Denial

Lythogoe refutes the allegations, TMZ reported. He reiterated to TMZ that his relationship with Paula has been completely platonic and respectful over their two-decade long association.

Fear of Loosing Job

Per court records, Abdul reported the assault by Lythgoe, who was an “American Idol” producer then, to her representatives but refrained from action fearing job loss. Her contracts also included clauses preventing her from public speaking about the incidence, the lawsuit stated.

Additional Allegations

The lawsuit also claims another assault that happened several years later, when Abdul worked as a judge for “So You Think You Can Dance”. Abdul was allegedly attacked again by Lythgoe at his residence, after a meal, and she fled immediately, court documents detail.

Deadline Based Filing

The filing was done shortly before the Dec. 31 cut-off date set up by California’s Sexual Abuse and Cover-Up Accountability Act. This law provides an opportunity for people to file sexual abuse lawsuits that would otherwise be barred by the statute of limitations.

Any significant legal penalties resulting from this lawsuit could potentially affect stakeholders’ confidence in productions associated with Lythgoe, potentially impacting trading activities associated with these entities.

PIP Penguin