"Idol" Judges Threatened?

FILE ** In this Aug. 26, 2008 file photo, "American Idol" judges, from left, Simon Cowell, Kara DioGuardi, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson arrive at a promotional event for the show in New York. AP Photo/Jason DeCrow, file

Be careful not to read too much into what someone from Louisville says while heading out the door - like the "American Idol" judges did.

The producers of "Idol" apologized Thursday on behalf of its judges, who apparently misinterpreted what a contestant in Louisville, Ky., said after a failed audition. On his way out, Mark Mudd said: "Take care and be careful."

Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell took that as a threat. Abdul scolded Mudd, telling him, "You don't say that to people, 'Be careful.' That's just not a normal thing to say."

It turns out that "Be careful" is a regional parting expression.

The show's producers say they had not heard that from any other contestants, so it took everyone by surprise.

A statement from "Idol" producers said: "We now know better and look forward to visiting Louisville again someday."
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