“American Idol” judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie, as well as host Ryan Seacrest, have all signed on to return for the show’s landmark 20th season, which also marks its fifth on ABC. The network announced on Tuesday that all four will be back when “American Idol” returns in spring 2022. Seacrest has been with the show every year since it began (including that first season in 2002, when he was partnered with Brian Dunkleman).
“Luke, Katy, Lionel and Ryan are music and industry icons that have become synonymous with ‘Idol’ on ABC,” said Rob Mills, executive vice president, unscripted and alternative Entertainment, Walt Disney Television. “Their star power is unmatched, and their support is a gift to our contestants that have deeply benefited from their wisdom over the past four seasons—and they’re ready to do it again. As we begin a momentous season, I think it’s safe to say this dream team has officially cemented their legacy on ‘Idol.’”
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Last season, “Idol” won its two-hour time slot among adults 18-49 for a second year in a row, and was the No. 4 unscripted series with total viewers.
“’American Idol’ is still the original music show that genuinely creates superstars and continues to evolve to allow true artists to succeed in this unique business,” said executive producer and showrunner Megan Wolflick. “The chemistry and passion Katy, Luke, Lionel and Ryan bring is second to none. We couldn’t be more ecstatic that they are returning for this iconic 20th season in search of the freshest new talent that this nation has to offer.”
Perry, Bryan and Richie have been the permanent judges on “American Idol” since it was revived on ABC in 2018.
“We are thrilled that Katy, Lionel, Luke and Ryan will be back to help discover our next American Idol,” said executive producer Eli Holzman, CEO of Industrial Media, which owns “Idol” producer 19 Entertainment. “This dream team has selected and guided some of the most talented ‘Idol’ contestants in the history of the series, and we can’t wait to see who they’ll find next.”
Season 5 auditions begin on Aug. 6, as the show bringing back another live, virtual round of auditions, dubbed “Idol Across America.” Instituted during COVID times, the live virtual nationwide search is divided by all 50 states plus Washington, D.C.
Here are how this year’s “Idol Across America” auditions will be held:
Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina (Aug. 6)
Connecticut, New Jersey, New York (Aug. 8)
Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas (Aug. 11)
Florida, Michigan, Virginia, West Virginia (Aug. 13)
Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi (Aug. 16)
Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee (Aug. 18)
Alaska, California, Hawaii, Nevada (Aug. 21)
Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming (Aug. 23)
Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Wisconsin (Aug. 25)
Open Call: Nationwide (Aug. 27)
Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah (Aug. 31)
Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont (Sept. 2)
Delaware, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C. (Sept. 8)
Open Call: The South (Sept. 10)
Open Call: East Coast (Sept. 13)
Open Call: West Coast (Sept. 16)
Open Call: Nationwide (Sept. 21)
“American Idol” is produced by Fremantle and Industrial Media’s 19 Entertainment. Executive producers include Megan Wolflick, also serving as showrunner, and Fremantle’s Jennifer Mullin with Eli Holzman and Aaron Saidman serving as executive producers for 19 Entertainment. Fremantle distributes the series worldwide.
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