ABC to Revive ‘American Idol’ in 2018

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ABC is reviving American Idol, the original reality singing competition and one-time ratings juggernaut that was cancelled by Fox last year.

The network confirmed Tuesday it had won the rights to the series, which ran for 15 years on Fox between 2001 and 2016 and launched the music careers of countless artists, including Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson, and Chris Daughtry.

American Idol is a pop-culture staple that left the air too soon,” ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey said in a statement. “ABC is the right home to reignite the fan base. We are thrilled viewers will once again share in these inspiring stories of people realizing their dreams.”

The network did not announce who would serve as host of the show or as judges. The series launched in 2001 with judges Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and Simon Cowell, but later editions of the show featured celebrity judges including Jennifer Lopez, Steven Tyler, and Mariah Carey.

TMZ previously reported that ABC wanted original series host Ryan Seacrest to return for the revival. But Seacrest recently joined Kelly Ripa on the network’s morning show, Live with Kelly and Ryan, which shoots in New York City daily. Idol is shot in Los Angeles, and the commute would likely be a nightmare for him.

“We haven’t gotten that far,” Seacrest said on his show Monday when asked by Ripa whether producers had approached him to return. “This was news to me, actually, last week. I had said at the end of the series, ‘Goodbye for now,’ hoping somewhere it would come back.”

ABC won a bidding war over Fox and NBC for the rights to the show, according to Entertainment Weekly.

 

Follow Daniel Nussbaum on Twitter: @dznussbaum

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