One place where Simon Cowell won’t be landing this season following the cancellation of the U.S. version of his The X Factor: American Idol. “No, he’s not going to be on the show at all,” Idol executive producer Per Blankens said today during a press event on the show’s new LA set. “I’ve heard he’s going to the UK to do X Factor,” he added. (He is.) The possibility of Cowell’s return after Fox last week axed X Factor was as one of several topics addressed in a sit-down with new Idol EPs Blankens, Jesse Ignjatovic and Evan Prager. The trio was joined by Idol’s new director Louis J. Horvitz, set designer Baz Halpin, and returning EP and FremantleMedia president of entertainment programming Trish Kinane. Also there was Fox’s David Hill, the Senior EVP of 21st Century Fox and former chairman and CEO of Fox Sports who was put in charge of the show and the now cancelled X-Factor in early June.
Related: ‘Idol’ “Listened To Viewers” & Changed Format, Says EP
Season 13 of Idol launched to a premiere low January 15 as the show has been trying to get its once mighty mojo back with a reconfigured judging panel and new showrunners. The show moves into its live shows next week, going head-to-head with NBC’s Sochi Olympics. That isn’t a big worry, Blankens told me. “The ratings are doing OK considering and there is really nothing you can do about the Olympics — we knew when we did the schedule that we’d be facing it. Added Kinane: “The ratings have stabilized and we’re very happy with where they are against the Olympics. We’re up over where we were in 2010,” she said.
“What we hope with the live shows next week and going forward is that we can reconnect with the fans and get them to come back home,” Blankens said. “A lot of people love Idol but I think they didn’t approve of the way some things went last year.” Among the format tweaks: for the live shows beginning Wednesday viewers will be able to vote at the beginning of the show as opposed to the end as in past seasons.
Related: ‘Idol’ Partners With Google & Facebook For Online Voting
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When Fox confirmed recently that AT&T, which had been one of the main sponsors of the singing competition since Season 2, will not return for the current 13th season, the move appeared to be a sign of the times. … Read More »
An American Idol staple — the AT&T voting numbers read by host Ryan Seacrest after every performance — are gone. AT&T, which joined the Fox singing competition in Season 2, will not return for Idol’s upcoming 13th season. … Read More »
Fox‘s American Idol is hosting a preview event at 5:30 PM PT ahead of tomorrow’s Season XII premiere. Watch the live-streamed Q&A with judges Jennifer Lopez, Harry Connick, Jr., Keith Urban, and host Ryan Seacrest:
Related: TCA: ‘American Idol’ “Listened To Viewers” … Read More »
“We listened to the viewers and they told us they’re fed up with the middle rounds after Hollywood Week and before the live shows, so we’ve shortened all of that down, condensed the middle round into one week – we’re calling it Rush Week,” American Idol exec producer Trish Kinane told TV critics at Winter TV Press Tour 2014.
They’ve also added something called The Chamber, where Idolettes go after host Ryan Seacrest tells them that in a couple minutes they’ve got to “give it their all,” Kinane explained, where we’ll see them pray, sing, check their armpits for sweat — whatever. “It’s a very intimate moment,” she told critics. Read More »
In addition to a reconfigured judging panel and new showrunners, American Idol will have a new director this season: Seven time Emmy Award-winning producer/director/writer Louis J. Horvitz. He replaces Gregg Gelfand. Horvitz is one of the go-to directors for live TV, having overseen the live broadcasts of the Academy Awards, the Emmy Awards, the Grammy Awards and the Kennedy Center Honors ceremonies. He has won five Emmy Awards for his work on the Oscars and two for his work on the Kennedy Center Honors. “We are incredibly lucky to have Louis joining American Idol XIII this season,” said Trish Kinane, President of Entertainment Programming, FremantleMedia North America. “He is a true talent who has overseen some of the most glamorous and entertaining productions on U.S. television.”
American Idol debuts with a two-night, four-hour premiere Wednesday, January 15 (8-10 PM ET/PT) and Thursday, January 16 (8-10 PM ET/PT). The new judging panel includes returning Jennifer Lopez, who took off last season, as well as last season’s freshman Keith Urban; they’re joined by new judge Harry Connick, Jr., Randy Jackson has taken over the mentor role. Read More »
Fox has set return dates for sophomore drama The Following and American Idol and a premiere date for new drama Rake. Season 13 of American Idol will have a two-night launch January 15-16. Sleepy Hollow will wrap its freshman season on January 20 at 8 PM, leading to the second-season debut of Following, which will succeed Sleepy Hollow, returning to its Monday 9 PM slot. New legal drama Rake will kick off on Sunday, January 19, following the NFC Championship Game, before moving into its Thursday 9 PM berth on January 23. New comedy Enlisted will debut on Friday, January 10. The network also confirmed that new comedy Surviving Jack will air behind Idol on Thursdays for eight episodes in spring (no premiere date set yet) when Idol‘s result show is cut to 30 minutes for the first time, and noted that fellow midseason comedy Us & Them also will have a spring debut. The new season of Fox’s Saturday late-night Animation Domination High-Def block will launch January 11 with Lucas Bros. Moving Co. and Golan The Insatiable. Here are Fox’s midseason premiere date:
Related: Fox’s ‘Surviving Jack’ Gets Post-‘Idol’ Slot, Order Trimmed; ‘Dads’ Expected To Get Back Order Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Fox is firming up its midseason comedy scheduling plans. I’ve learned that the network is going to launch Surviving Jack after American Idol on Thursday. The comedy’s order has been trimmed from 13 to … Read More »
With everything and everyone officially coming together at the last minute like last year, American Idol’s judges for the upcoming thirteenth season are finally seated. Keith Urban is back from last year and, as announced earlier today, Jennifer Lopez is back after exiting the season before … Read More »
After the usual drama and down-to-the wire dealmaking, Fox has locked in its judging panel for the upcoming 13th season, with Harry Connick Jr and Jennifer Lopez joining Keith Urban, while original Idol judge … Read More »
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By Nellie Andreeva – EXCLUSIVE: He is a self-professed big fan of American Idol who has done two very well-received stints as a guest mentor on the Fox singing competition … Read More »
The judging panel for the 13th season of American Idol is expected to be in place by the end of the weekend so production can get underway as planned. Harry Connick Jr. is finalizing a deal … Read More »