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‘American Idol’ Hookups: Paul & Nikki, Kelly & Justin, and More (Photos)

See photos of Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, Kelly Clarkson, and others for whom “American Idol” played Cupid.

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American Idol contestant Paul McDonald just married Twilight star Nikki Reed, who he met on the show. See photos of Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, Kelly Clarkson, and others for whom Idol played Cupid. 

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Paul McDonald and Nikki Reed

When American Idol contestant Paul McDonald attended the premiere of Little Red Riding Hood in March, he was introduced to Twilight star Nikki Reed—and their love at first sight was captured on camera. "You're amazing," Nikki told the 27-year-old singer. "I'm blushing! I should go." The couple started dating immediately, and within three months McDonald asked her to marry him. McDonald and Reed exchanged vows last weekend in Malibu in front of 100 friends, and Idol alumnus Stefano Langone reportedly sang at the reception, along with McDonald and his band. “Yesterday was the most amazing day of my life,” he tweeted on Monday, “everything was perfect. I'm officially a MARRIED MAN! Woohoo!”

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Casey Abrams and Haley Reinhart

Several weeks into Season 10 of American Idol, the chemistry between contestants Casey Abrams and Haley Reinhart was unmistakable, leading many to suspect that they were a couple. As an Idol source told InTouch Weekly: “Most of their downtime is spent together and they have a very touchy-feely relationship. They’re always lying on each other when they’re around the other contestants and everybody thinks they’re hooking up.” Abrams denied there was an affair, and Reinhart told the Associated Press after the season finale that the two “weren’t dating…but he’s such an amazing guy. I love him.”

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Pia Toscano and Mark Ballas

With the hope, perhaps, of creating a reality TV supercouple, American Idol contestant Pia Toscano developed a crush on Mark Ballas of Dancing with the Stars, which shoots on the same lot.  The 22-year-old singer enlisted the help of a friend who knew Dancing contestant Chris Jericho, and she and the 25-year-old Ballas were soon set up on a date. And after Toscano performed on the Idol season finale, Ballas tweeted his feelings: “Just watched the idol final in NYC.. @PToscanoAI10 Is my Champion... Love you Pi, so proud of you..” Alas, their showmance ended in September after five months, when busy schedules got in the way.

Ray Mickshaw, WireImage / Getty Images

J.D. Adams and Kimberly Caldwell

On Season 2 of American Idol, Kimberly Caldwell (who finished seventh) began an affair with J.D. Adams (who was voted off early in the final 32). “He is Prince Charming,” she told Us Weekly about Adams, a descendant of the U.S. presidents. “I had come down with laryngitis and tonsillitis last week. I was quarantined and wasn’t allowed to see anybody. Before you know it—and he had been planning this before he knew I was sick—100 long stem roses show up at my door!” A few years later, on Larry King, she admitted that the relationship had ended but that dating on Idol was inevitable. “I mean there are cute guys and cute girls around,” Caldwell said. “What do you expect?”

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Anoop Desai and Megan Joy

In May 2009, the New York Daily News reported that Season 8 contestants Anoop Desai (who finished seventh) and Megan Joy (who finished ninth) were “looking cozy” at an Outback Steakhouse in Burbank. But what made the gossip item more intriguing was that eventual runner-up Adam Lambert, who was not yet out, reportedly brought his boyfriend to the dinner.

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David Cook and Kimberly Caldwell

While covering the red carpet for the Season 7 Idol finale, former contestant Kimberly Caldwell got an unexpected surprise—she was asked out on a date by eventual winner David Cook. “Oh my gosh!” Caldwell cooed as she said yes. “My life is over!” Having previously dated J.D. Adams, Caldwell understood the pressures of Idol-mania— "I think she just gets that this is all nuts," Cook told People magazine. "She's a nice break from the chaos. But six months later the curtain came down on their relationship.

Frederick M. Brown / Getty Images

Simon Cowell and Mezhgan Hussainy

On the second season finale of American Idol, Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul teased fans about an affair with a video fantasy that ended with a kiss. But the real Idol romance for Cowell went on behind the scenes—in March 2010 he admitted to Jay Leno that he had become engaged to the show’s makeup artist, Mezhgan Hussainy. “Well, I do have somebody in my life now, Jay, yes. And I kinda made a decision this year to make somebody happy,” he said uncomfortably, before finally admitting, “I bought her the ring in London." But when the couple hadn’t exchanged vows by September 2011, Howard Stern asked Cowell whether he was still engaged. The X Factor creator answered awkwardly that he was “not sure.”

Michel Boutefeu / Getty Images; Bebeto Matthews / AP Photo

Paula Abdul and Corey Clark

In perhaps the biggest scandal in American Idol history, two years after he appeared on Season 2, contestant Corey Clark claimed that he’d had had an affair with Paula Abdul. During a 2005 interview with ABC’s Primetime, Clark claimed that he had been coached by Abdul and had a three-month-long sexual relationship. As proof, he presented a voice mail she had left him and the fact that he had her phone number. Abdul refused to comment on the affair, saying, "Not only do I never lie, I never respond to lies." Several months later, a Fox investigation concluded that Clark’s allegations “have not been substantiated by any corroborating evidence or witnesses, including those provided by Mr. Clark, and Ms. Abdul expressly denies that any such relationship ever existed.”

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Kelly Clarkson and Justin Guarini and Tamyra Gray

Showmances began in Season 1 of American Idol, when eventual winner Kelly Clarkson started seeing runner-up Justin Guarini. But as Richard Rushfield revealed in his book American Idol: The Untold Story, the season’s three-way music battle was complicated by contestant Tamyra Gray. “There were also hints that it had turned into a three-way something else in the background. By the end of the first season, rumors were rampant in the house that curly-haired hottie Guarini was juggling both Gray and Clarkson.” Suspicions of a triangle are further confirmed by the song Clarkson and Gray co-wrote, “You Thought Wrong.” As the two sang together: “You thought we didn't know / You thought we were in the dark / But boy your covers blown / ‘cause we both know now.”