Internet InfoMedia american idol judge luke bryan addresses rumored feud with lionel richie

“American Idol” recently suffered a significant blow when judge Katy Perry announced she’s leaving the show at the end of the current season. Fans could still sleep peacefully, though, knowing that her fellow judges, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie, were not going anywhere.

But now there are rumors that the two men are not getting along. Bryan chose to set the record straight during a recent appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!

Kimmel inquired if recent headlines he’d seen about Bryan and Richie feuding over Perry’s replacement were accurate. “I heard rumors, and these are tabloid rumors, that you and Lionel are feuding… Is there any truth to that?” he asked the country star.

‘AMERICAN IDOL’ CONTESTANT AND LUKE BRYAN HAVE AWKWARD TIFF, MOCKS JUDGE’S COUNTRY TWANG

Luke Bryan behind the judges desk on "American Idol" in a blue jacket split Lionel Richie behind the deak wearing a navy jacket

Luke Bryan commented on rumors that he and fellow “American Idol” judge Lionel Richie are feuding. (Getty Images)

“Yeah, me and Lionel – it’s tense on the set,” Bryan said sarcastically. “You know Lionel, how combative he is. You saw how awful he was on ‘The Greatest Night in Pop,’ you know how he just tried to ruin that whole scenario.”

Lionel Richie in a dark purple/brown leather jacket sits behind the judge's desk with Katy Perry in the middle in pink and Luke Bryan at the other end in a plaid shirt

Since “American Idol” was rebooted on ABC in 2018, Luke Bryan, Lionel Richie and Katy Perry have served as judges. Perry announced she would be leaving after this season. (Eric McCandless/Disney via Getty Images)

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“I read the tabloid,” Bryan admitted, “And I’m like, ‘Me and Lionel in a feud over Katy’s replacement…’ You can’t feud with Lionel. Lionel’s like – I mean he’s like apple pie. You know, he’s like the most wholesome human. So me and Lionel are good.”

Lionel Richie speaks with a pen seated behind the judge's desk on "American Idol" with Katy Perry next to him and Luke Byran looking over at him

Luke Bryan says he and Lionel Richie don’t have input on who replaces Katy Perry as the third judge on “American Idol.” (Disney/Eric McCandless/Getty Images)

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Bryan also revealed if he and Richie have any influence in hiring a new judge. “Not really, we let the smart people do that,” he told Kimmel. “We just show up and judge the talent and have fun.”

In February, Perry confirmed during an appearance on Kimmel’s show that she would be exiting “American Idol.” At the time, Perry said Bryan and Richie would learn of her exit when they watched her appearance. “They know that I have some things planned for this year,” she added. “So it’s going to be a very, very exciting year… for all popstar girlies!”

Perry has been advocating for musician Jelly Roll to take her spot next season.

Jelly Roll and Katy Perry walk red carpets at awards shows.

Katy Perry has recommended that country singer Jelly Roll take her seat when she leaves the show. (Getty Images)

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Bryan said he had an inkling Perry was going to leave the show. “She had hinted to me – a little bit,” Bryan confirmed to Kimmel.

“Then maybe she hadn’t told Lionel, is that possible?” Kimmel asked.

“Well, Lionel is such a father figure, you know how it’s really hard to sit your dad down and tell him things,” Bryan noted.

Lionel Richie in an all black outfit, Katy Perry in yellow dress, and Luke Bryan in an all black outfit at the judges table on "American Idol'

Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan smile for a photo on the “American Idol” set. (Eric McCandless)

Richie, Perry and Bryan have served as judges on “American Idol” since the reboot of the show in 2018.

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