Frenchie's Song: Only on ET
February 14, 2003
Semi-finalist FRENCHIE DAVIS may have been ejected from "American Idol" because she previously modeled for an adult Web site, but tonight on ET, you'll get to hear the popular Washington, D.C., contestant perform once more. In an exclusive interview, she talks about the hardships that drove her to pose for the site, and sings the song that she would have performed on "Idol."
"I am very honored that the American public appreciates my work and my confidence as much as they do," she told our special correspondent PAULA ABDUL.
Wednesday, co-executive producer NIGEL LYTHGOE and FOX executives held a press conference in which they announced that they were pulling Frenchie from "Idol" because photos and video of her had appeared on a racy Web site.
"If that photo had come out and you'd seen an 'American Idol' logo on that, you'd go, 'No, I'm sorry,'" Nigel said. "We have to be very careful. This is a real family show. It's now a brand."
Frenchie told ET that financial problems drove her to pose for the site. "Four years ago, I modeled in lingerie on an adult Web site," the Howard University senior said. "From what I hear, the Web site is under new ownership and it's a lot different now than when I worked for it. I would never compromise my integrity to be successful."
Frenchie also confided to Paula that things got so bad she had nowhere to live at one point. "The year I didn't have money to pay for school, I was homeless for three months. I went through struggles, even then I knew there was a greater good."
She was expected to perform on the Feb. 25 episode of the hit series, and said she regrets not being able to sing. "They knowingly allowed me to advance in the competition and two weeks before I was to perform, this is the decision they reached," she said. "I'm disappointed in that."
Her profile has been erased from the "American Idol" Web site, www.idolsonfox.com,
and, so far, there's no word yet on who will replace the charismatic singer.
The producers confirmed that Frenchie told them in November that suggestive photos and video of her had appeared on the Web. They said they will continue to support her career. "This is a lady who made a moral mistake at 18, 19 and has used that money to put herself through college," Nigel said. "Frenchie was nothing but honest with us. Are we going to discard her? No. Certainly, 19 Entertainment will be doing anything that they can to ensure that Frenchie gets a recording offer outside of 'American Idol.'"
For the very latest on Frenchie and "American Idol," watch tonight's ET!