First Ellen DeGeneres Idol Pictures Released

Fox has released the first photos of an Idol-fied Ellen DeGeneres, and she looks like she couldn't be happier about her new gig.

In the group shot, the 51-year-old daytime talk host, who will fill the chair of departed American Idol judge Paula Abdul, strikes a pose alongside her new co-judges, Simon Cowell, Kara DioGuardi and Randy Jackson, as well as host Ryan Seacrest.

Though the reality competition series will kick off its ninth season on Jan. 12 at 8/7c with audition episodes, DeGeneres does not begin until February, when the semifinalists are determined.

In the interim, guest judges, including Victoria Beckham, Mary J. Blige, Kristin Chenoweth, Neil Patrick Harris, Joe Jonas, Avril Lavigne, Katy Perry, and Shania Twain, will fill her spot.

Are you excited to see DeGeneres on Idol?

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