ATLANTA — Paula Abdul says she has been invited to remain as an "American Idol" judge and that she's optimistic that she'll be able to negotiate a new contract.
"I've been invited to stay the duration of the show, however long it lasts," said Abdul, whose contract hasn't been renewed since it expired after the show's eighth season. She said Monday the invitation to come back is subject to agreement on the details of a new deal.
The 47-year-old singer-dancer was interviewed by The Associated Press backstage at the new sitcom "Drop Dead Diva," which premieres on July 12 on the Lifetime channel. She's making a guest appearance on the show as a judge.
She jokingly called the panel of "Idol" judges that includes Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi a "dysfunctional family of sorts."
"I'm the nurturing mom, Simon's the disapproving dad, and Randy's the cool brother," she said. "It's been an interesting journey. It's something that I'll always would want to be a part of."