Ryan Seacrest says new 'American Idol' judge Ellen Degeneres will change the "sexual tension" on the show.

The host is very pleased the openly gay star is joining the judging panel - which also includes Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi - because she will bring a new dynamic to the series.

He said: "We love Ellen, she is a superstar. She will change the sexual tension. Simon and Paula had a specific sort of tension, but this will be quite different."

Although Ryan is excited about Ellen's arrival, judge Randy insists she has a lot to learn from himself, Simon and Kara.

He quipped: "She'll be following my lead, I've told her to watch the dog."

Ellen is taking Paula Abdul's spot on the TV talent show, and will join the panel after the audition rounds are completed.

In the wake of Paula's unexpected departure in August, her role was filled by a number of celebrity judges, including Shania Twain, Victoria Beckham and Mary J. Blige, for the audition stage.

Ellen - who is married to actress Portia De Rossi - said: "This is so exciting for me. Hopefully, I will be the people's point of view because I'm just like everyone at home, I sit their and I watch it.

"I'm not looking at it in a critical way from the producer's mind. I'm looking at it as a person who is going to buy the music and is going to relate to that person."