DeGeneres added, "I told them I wouldn't leave them in a bind and that I would hold off on doing anything until they were able to figure out where they wanted to take the panel next." DeGeneres, 52, replaced Paula Abdul as judge for the show's ninth season, sitting at the table with Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson, and Kara DioGuardi. "It was a difficult decision to make, but my work schedule became more than I bargained for," the star said.
"I also realized this season that while I love discovering, supporting and nurturing young talent, it was hard for me to judge people and sometimes hurt their feelings. I loved the experience working on Idol and I am very grateful for the year I had. I am a huge fan of the show and will continue to be."
“Idol creator and executive producer Simon Fuller said in the statement: "I loved Ellen''s passion for the artists and her nurturing skills. She brought honesty and optimism to our judging panel and I will miss her greatly," Fuller added.