Since being booted from ''American Idol'' last month, 23-year-old Frenchie Davis has received the royal treatment. First she met the Queen of Soul. ''I wasn't really that nervous,'' she says. ''I'm planning on being a star too.'' Then she caught the attention of another Queen -- Latifah, who played her in a ''Saturday Night Live'' parody. ''She looked like me, but it wasn't really me,'' Davis clarifies.
All this attention reflects the problem with this season's ''AI.'' The queen was coronated after a showstopping performance on Jan. 29 and then banished because of a little Internet-porn problem. (Seeing Davis cover the Grammys for ''Entertainment Tonight,'' while rewarding, doesn't seem suitable for Her Royal Highness.) Notoriously crabby judge Simon Cowell predicts Frenchie would have won the competition, while Randy Jackson calls her ''an amazing talent.'' He says it's ''unfortunate'' she was cut from the show, but ''Frenchie is a celebrity now. Everyone in America knows who she is.'' Even Davis can't be modest. ''I'm sure there are some contestants breathing easier now.'' Tell it.
While Ruben et al. toil away on set, Davis is meeting with record execs and reading movie and theater scripts. In the fall, she heads back to Howard University in Washington, D.C., to get her musical-theater degree. If that doesn't work out, she could always find work in foreign affairs. Asked to speculate why she was booted when other contestants with checkered pasts remained on ''AI,'' Davis had one salient theory: ''People ARE pretty mad at the French.''