When Fremantle Media’s “#American Idol” ran its fifteenth and final season on #FOX back in 2016, it seemed like the end of an era. The pioneer singing reality competition came across as a shadow of its former self, eclipsed by other shows that have followed its lead like “The Voice” and “America’s Got Talent.” Ever since the departure of its most prominent judges such as the loveable Mean Brit #Simon Cowell, “Idol” seemed to just barely make it by. But just this May of 2017 came a ray of hope for the original premiere singing competition when it was picked up by ABC for a return to the screen by 2018. However, Fox is already expressing a dismissive stance on the network’s move regarding their former program.

Advertisements
Advertisements

Too soon after finale

The degree to which Fox has lambasted their rival ABC and Fremantle Media for a hurried revival of “American Idol” was made known on a media conference call with Fox TV chair Dana Walden. In it, she was harshly critical of the show’s producers, Fremantle, for rushing production on a new network so soon after the farewell season on Fox, which they had heavily promoted as such to the tune of $25 million in advertising costs.

Walden also revealed that when ABC and NBC began bidding to acquire rights to show “Idol”, Fox had also joined in, but with the stipulation that they hold off until 2020 to make a comeback on the network, in order to make significant changes to the competition mechanics. But Fremantle apparently had financial reasons for wanting to get the show returned to the air, and they preferred to keep the original contest format without alterations.

Advertisements

The Fox TV chair opined that the hurried 2018 return of “American Idol” after saying a “definitive” goodbye to audiences in 2016 gives off a “fraudulent” message. “Fans would not appreciate being told one thing and then having the show brought back right away,” Walden said.

Signs of trouble

Already there have been signs that Fremantle Media and ABC appear to be having difficulties getting “American Idol” back on its feet for TV. An attempt to sign up some names associated with the original run on Fox has fallen through. Simon Cowell has said no to returning as a judge, saying he prefers to remember the show the way it was in its early seasons, with him joined by Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson.

Furthermore, season 1 winner Kelly Clarkson, the “original” American Idol, has also declined approaches to be a judge in the revival, opting instead to become a coach in the next season of “The Voice” on NBC. No further word has come from ABC regarding if they have a list of potential judges already.