'So You Think You Can Dance' Season 18 to Continue Without Nigel Lythgoe Amid Sexual Assault Lawsuits

Lythgoe co-created the dance competition series, on which he served as a judge for its first 16 seasons.

Nigel Lythgoe is out at So You Think You Can Dance. On Friday, the production companies and network behind the competition series announced that its upcoming 18th season will proceed without Lythgoe as he faces sexual assault lawsuits.

"19 Entertainment, Dick Clark Productions, and FOX can confirm the upcoming season of So You Think You Can Dance will proceed, although without Nigel Lythgoe, to ensure the show remains committed to the contestants, who have worked incredibly hard for the opportunity to compete on our stage," the statement read. "No decision has been made as to a replacement judge for this season, which will premiere on FOX on Monday, March 4th."

Lythgoe co-created the series alongside Simon Fuller. He served as a judge for its first 16 seasons. For season 18, Allison Holker and Maksim Chmerkovskiy will be the show's judges along with guest judge Comfort Fedoke. Returning to host the beloved dance competition series is Cat Deeley.

Lythgoe's SYTYCD exit comes less than a week after Paula Abdul filed a sexual assault lawsuit against him. In the suit, which was obtained by ET, Abdul claimed that the American Idol producer sexually assaulted her on two occasions, once when she was a judge on Idol and again when she was a judge on So You Think You Can Dance, both of which Lythgoe denied in a statement to ET.

"To say that I am shocked and saddened by the allegations made against me by Paula Abdul is a wild understatement," Lythgoe's statement read. "For more than two decades, Paula and I have interacted as dear -- and entirely platonic -- friends and colleagues. Yesterday, however, out of the blue, I learned of these claims in the press and I want to be clear: not only are they false, they are deeply offensive to me and to everything I stand for."

"While Paula's history of erratic behavior is well known, I can't pretend to understand exactly why she would file a lawsuit that she must know is untrue," Lythgoe's statement concluded. "But I can promise that I will fight this appalling smear with everything I have."

Shortly thereafter, multiple outlets obtained another lawsuit against Lythgoe. In that legal filing, two women claim that Lythgoe sexually assaulted them they were contestants on the short-lived ABC reality competition show All American Girl back in 2003. ET has reached out to Lythgoe for comment on the second lawsuit.

Both of the lawsuits were filed under California's Sexual Abuse and Cover Up Accountability Act, which gave people a window of opportunity to filed lawsuits related to alleged incidents that would otherwise fall outside the statute of limitations. However, that window closed on Dec. 31 -- meaning Abdul's lawsuit made the cut, but the second lawsuit may not qualify for consideration under the Sexual Abuse and Cover Up Accountability Act.