The curly-haired heart-throb who caught our hearts during Season 1 of American Idol, Justin Guarini, told Insider that it was “evident” that Kelly Clarkson was going to go home as the winner, winner, chicken dinner. And not only that, if he did win, they might have a serious situation on their hands.
“If I win this thing, you’re going to have to hire some extra security,” Guarini said. “I was like, ‘If I win this thing, there’s going to be a riot… Because it was so apparent to any objective observer that Kelly was the one to win.”
The most-watched competition show of the 2000s, which first aired on June 11, 2002, is celebrating its 20th anniversary. Guarini was the runner-up to Clarkson but has since released several albums, and has extensive theatre credits to his name. While he was on American Idol, he was most known for his hair, charismatic smile, and smooth vocals. Some of his most notable performances were “Get Here” by Brenda Russell, “P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)” by Michael Jackson, and “For Once In My Life” by Stevie Wonder, which he recorded for “American Idol: Greatest Moments” season 1 soundtrack.
Although the singer didn’t take home the grand prize, he was still excited for Clarkson. “It just was so evident, to me even, that my friend was supposed to win and that it was right,” Guarini added. “One of my favorite things about Kelly is that who you hear on the TV is exactly who you see and hear backstage. In any given situation, she has always been so herself.”