This article is from the archive of our partner .

Rapper/singer/lipstick wearer Nicki Minaj is about to close an $8 million deal to join the judges panel on the next season of American Idol, which so far only includes Mariah Carey. That's a fairly big get for the network! And, hm, maybe not the wisest move for Minaj? She's on the way up, isn't she? Not the way down. An American Idol judging gig is for people on the way down, people who still haven't quite resigned themselves into settling into just a regular old rich life without all the constant fame but aren't really known anymore for doing what they used to do. That doesn't really describe Minaj, does it. But, what can you do. Eight million dollars is eight million dollars, after all. There's also word that country singer Keith Urban will be joining the panel, beating out fellow countryman Brad Paisley, which ought to go a long way in sewing up the coveted and crucial Nicole Kidman vote. So that could be your panel, America. Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, Keith Urban, and maybe Randy Jackson. I can't believe I'm saying this, but they kind of need Randy Jackson, don't they? Doesn't there at least need to be one experienced judge on the panel? Otherwise it would just be chaos! Sure Ryan could try to wrangle them a bit, but he's all the way up there on the stage. What can he really do? No, I think they need Randy. You hear that, dawg? For me, for you, I think they should keep you on board. [The Hollywood Reporter]

Aw. Olympic swim darling Missy Franklin will make a cameo appearance in the upcoming "frat pack" (Vince Vaughn, Owen Wilson) comedy The Interns. That's exciting for her! I mean, she was already going to be the coolest girl at her high school for winnin' all them medals in London, but now she's in a movie with dudes that kids think are funny. (Though, perhaps increasingly less so?) That's pretty big. That's, like, prom queen level stuff right there. Yearbook legend stuff. Missy, girl. You made it. You really, really made it. [Entertainment Weekly]

Oh god. Literally, oh God. Randall Wallace, the guy who wrote Braveheart (no relation), has decided to develop Heaven Is For Real into a movie. You know Heaven Is For Real, right? That's the "non-fiction" book about a little boy who died for a little bit and went to heaven and met Jesus, who conveniently had blue eyes, because many Palestinian Jews at the time had blue eyes. It's a ridiculous story that was basically coaxed out of the boy by his ghoulish, opportunistic father, a minister, and now it's becoming a movie, from the guy who did We Were Soldiers. But really the best part of all of this is that the boy's name? Oh heavens, the boy's name is Colton Burpo. Colton Burpo! My favorite kid. Good ol' Burpo, burpin' along, like Burpo does. Despite the unpleasantness of the whole story, you gotta love Colton Burpo. [Variety]

So that Dwight Schrute-focused Office spinoff seems to be proceeding, as they've just cast another role. Comedian Thomas Middleditch joins Roswell actress Majandra Delfino (seriously) on the show, alongside Rainn Wilson of course, as "Jeb Schrute, who hasn’t done well in any previous career paths he’s taken – worm breeder and Bigfoot hunter among them — but has found some success with a pot farm and has made an exercise video about things you can do with a knife and a canoe." So... Good for him? It's a big part, so sure, it is a good thing. And Middleditch is funny, especially in this College Humor video. (Yes, I just said that.) Maybe this will be good after all? (No it will not.) [Deadline]

Hm. Benedict Cumberbatch, knobbly British lord of the poshest order, may be joining the cast of the down-home Oklahoma drama August: Osage County. He'd be playing the slow son of Margo Martindale's character, who is Meryl Streep's character's sister. It's a decent part, not terribly big, but few roles in an ensemble really are. But I dunno, small as it may be, is he really right for this sort of thing? It could be interesting to see him stretch beyond the foppish British stuff, but can he do it?? Only one way to find out, I suppose. [The Hollywood Reporter]

Ooohh, here are some weeeeird and twissssted new promos for the next season of American Horror Story (excuse me, American Horror Story: Asylum) that feature bathtubs full of milk, white nuns, women trapped in flowers, and a blue shirt of some kind. I think we'd all agree that the blue shirt is the scariest! []

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to