Simon Cowell cools Paula Abdul rumors

By Sean O’Connell No one knows for sure who will be joining Simon Cowell and Antonio “L.A.” Reid on the “X Factor” judges panel … including Cowell, himself.

As rumors swirl that the former “American Idol” judge would be bringing his old partner, Paula Abdul, to the new program, Cowell’s reps have stepped forward and thrown a little cool water on the story.

Not ice-cold water, mind you. Just cool.

“It’s still playing out,” the press reps told THR. “Nothing is set, and Paula is one of many people Simon is talking to. He’s said the same thing many times, including on the radio last week. There’s nothing new.”

Abdul’s name floats alongside a handful of other celebrity talents on Cowell’s wish list, including Cheryl Cole, “Wham!” frontman George Michael, and Mariah Carey.

No matter who he chooses, Cowell has won the publicity war. Though his new show doesn’t bow until the fall, we are talking about it on the spring, raising interest in what’s sure to be a television hit. Well played, Cowell. Well played.

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