This former pop princess started out as a Laker Girl before becoming an Emmy-winning choreographer for performers (Janet Jackson), movies (Coming to America) and TV series (The Tracey Ullman Show). Abdul stepped into the spotlight in 1988 with her first album, Forever Your Girl, which spawned a succession of hit singles and made her a familiar face on MTV. Following disappointing sales of her 1995 album Head Over Heels, Abdul's career began to flag, but was revived in 2002 when she signed on as a judge for the televised singing competition American Idol. Her touchy-feely presence on the massively popular series helped Abdul weather a handful of scandals, including a hit-and-run accident and allegations she had an affair with a contestant. In 2009, Abdul announced she would not be returning for the ninth season of Idol, and her slot on the judging panel was subsequently filled by talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres.