Producers of Fox's "American Idol" are looking into allegations that judge Paula Abdul had an affair with a contestant during the show's second season in 2003.
The move comes in the wake of published reports that "Idol" semifinalist Corey Clark has a book proposal claiming that Abdul offered financial support for his career and pressured him to keep their alleged romance secret.
A source close to the show, which is produced by Fremantle Media and 19 Entertainment, says Abdul denied Clark's claims when "Idol" producers initially asked about them.
At the same time, ABC News has been warned by Abdul lawyer Marty Singer that the network faces legal action if it proceeds with a "Primetime Live" special planned for next week that promises to "explore explosive claims about behind-the-scenes activities at 'American Idol,' " the source said.
Neither Singer nor Abdul's representatives returned calls or e-mails seeking comment. Representatives of News Corp.'s Fox and "Idol's" producers also declined to comment. Jeffrey Schneider, a spokesman for Walt Disney Co.'s ABC News, would confirm only that ABC News continued to work on the "Primetime" story.