Ryan Seacrest Says Justin Bieber Could Replace Simon Cowell On ‘Idol’

'I would want a much younger, thinner, more charming Simon,' the 'American Idol' host says of new judge.

At KIIS-FM’s annual Wango Tango festival on Saturday, the host of the station’s “On-Air With Ryan Seacrest” was feeling a little overshadowed as Bieber fever spread in Los Angeles’ Staples Center.

“The vibe is ‘Where’s [artist id="3187077"]Justin Bieber[/artist]?’ — that’s the vibe,” Seacrest joked to MTV News, when we caught up with him backstage. “All the girls that are hanging out here, even the ones that work for us, are like, ‘Have you seen him?’ I’m like, ‘I’m right here.’ And they’re like, ‘No, Justin Bieber him.’ ”

But when talk turned to the topic of who should replace departing “American Idol” judge Simon Cowell next season, Seacrest had some ideas.

“It’s gonna be different because there’s going to be an empty chair at the end of that panel,” the “AI” host said. “I’m not quite sure who’s going into that chair, so it’s a big [decision],” he added. The tough-talking Brit will go his own way after season nine with plans to head up the American version of talent show “The X Factor.”

“Who would I want in that chair?” Seacrest wondered aloud. “I would want a much younger, thinner, more charming Simon. … Bieber — he’s the guy!”

Recently, another “Idol” alum, guest judge Neil Patrick Harris , weighed in on who he would like to see take over for Cowell . And it wasn’t Bieber.

“I feel like [Simon]‘s irreplaceable,” Harris said. “I feel like whoever gets that spot has such a target on their back. I think [Howard] Stern would be great. I think he’s adequately polarizing and has strong opinions about things in a legitimate way, and I’m a fan of Howard Stern.”

Would Bieber make a good “American Idol” judge? Can he fill Simon’s chair? Discuss in the comments below!

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