The “American Idol” contestant under heightened scrutiny for the past two weeks since the emergence of sexually explicit photos, including some of her reportedly frolicking semi-nude at a World War II memorial, is no longer part of the competition, after being voted off last night’s show.
Photo of ‘American Idol’ contestant Antonella Barba reportedly in World War II memorial in Washington, D.C. Barba was voted off the show March, 8, 2007 (Image has been altered to meet WND standards)
Antonella Barba, 20, of Point Pleasant, N.J., did not receive enough ballots cast by telephone to continue into the final rounds of competition.
Barba became choked up and teary-eyed when she was informed by host Ryan Seacrest she would not be returning to the program.
When asked what memories of her experience she’d keep, she responded, “So many. Too many. I can’t even think about it right now. Just so many great ones.”
“I feel for you because you’ve taken a lot of stick in the media,” Simon Cowell, one of three judges on “Idol,” told Barba. “I think you’ve handled yourself well throughout and I don’t think anyone should be put in that situation.”
Barba ignited a firestorm of criticism after nude photographs of her, some of a graphic sexual nature went public on the Internet. Some showed her frolicking in the water of a U.S. war memorial in Washington, D.C.
“It would have been nice if they had found the slut Antonella Barba floating face down in the WWII memorial fountain, dead,” said WND reader Bob Sminkey. “What right does this disgusting whore have to disrespect our fallen heroes?”
There were also allegations of racism, since in 2003, Frenchie Davis, who is black and overweight, was booted after producers learned she had previously posed for topless pictures on an adult website.
Executive producer Nigel Lythgoe rejected that claim by TV’s Rosie O’Donnell, as he said, “‘American Idol’ constantly confirms to America that talent has nothing to do with weight or color.”