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Is Fighting Between 'Idol' Divas Minaj and Carey for Real, or for Ratings? THR

The high-profile cussing match between "American Idol" judges Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey might not be totally legit, according to The Hollywood Reporter, which cites an unnamed "Idol" insider.

According to the source, described as a “high-ranking ‘Idol’ insider,” the feud between the divas is all for show and just what executives on the Fox program were looking for. “No one's really worried,” the source is quoted as saying. “They know the parts they’re supposed to play.”

As previously reported, Minaj was taped swearing at Carey during auditions on Tuesday.

But another source at “Idol” sounded a cautious note, indicating things may have gone farther than planned. "Nicki went off and threatened Mariah,” the source said.

Interscope Chairman Jimmy Iovine, the show’s in-house mentor, offered an assessment of both singers. “Let me tell you, neither of these girls are shy,” Iovine told THR.

“He would know," the report points out. "Not only has the veteran music executive crossed paths with the singers professionally and socially, but as ‘American Idol’s’ in-house mentor (a role he anticipates continuing on season 12), he has come to understand the ins and outs of television judgeship.”

Iovine adds: “I was very bullish on Mariah. She gets songs and the process of producing. She really knows the studio. She has that experience, and let’s remember that most people going on these shows want to be Mariah Carey.

“Nicki is coming from a different place and another generation with her own incredibly legitimate opinions -- some things that are important to Mariah will not be to Nicki. But if they each bring their truth, you could see an incredible dynamic because they're both smart as hell.”