Ellen DeGeneres is joining the cast of one of her all-time favorite shows. "I have not missed one episode," says Ellen, after breaking the news that she's replacing Paula Abdul, who walked away from the show in August due to contract negotiations, as the fourth judge on American Idol. The daytime talk show host will be joining Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi for the ninth season of the hit Fox singing competition when it premieres in January 2010. "I've been dying to tell everyone," admitted Ellen. "It's just been so hard to keep it a secret. It is going to be so much fun," she added. So what made the network choose her? According to a statement released by Fox: "Ellen has been a fan of the show for many years, and her love of music and understanding of the American public will bring a unique human touch to our judging panel." But, don't worry — she's not leaving her talk show. "I'm going to have a day job and a night job," says Ellen.