Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, Randy Jackson, and…who is the other one? Ah, Keith Urban. Yeah all of them are fired and won’t be coming back for the next season of American Idol. And Jennifer Lopez isn’t coming back either. Or Nigel Lythgoe. That’s what they’re saying. So spin it away, boys! Here’s most of the report. It contains the delicious quote “No more big checks for big divas.”
From The Wrap:
“All four are gone,” [an] insider told TheWrap. “They feel they’ve lost their core audience and they want it back.”
A Fox spokesperson declined to comment for this story.
All four judges have options to return for another season, but Fox won’t be picking them up, according to the knowledgeable individual, who said: “No more big checks for divas.”
The network has resolved to stop paying the huge salaries it has been shoveling out for its big name talent, i.e. Carey’s reported $18 million package, Minaj’s $12 million salary and former judge Jennifer Lopez’s $15 million.
The show’s format will also change. Its look will be redesigned and the dated tribute nights will be a thing of the past. But the show’s trademark audition episodes will continue.
Behind the scenes, Fox Broadcasting chairman Kevin Reilly is charged with “fixing Idol.” And one of the first changes will occur at the top of the food chain: Longtime executive producer Lythgoe is expected to be replaced. What that means for the show’s producers, FremantleMedia, remains to be seen.
Fox’s meltdown has everything to do with the talent competition’s declining viewership. Its ratings are already down 22 percent this season and it hit a series low for ratings last Thursday, when it attracted only 11 million viewers and a 2.4 rating/7 share in the ad-coveted 18-49 demographic. The ratings slide is especially problematic during May Sweeps, where ratings numbers are used to dictate advertising rates.
Viewing has been in decline for several seasons now. At its height during Season 6, “Idol” attracted about 30 million viewers an episode.
So, why not just cancel the show?
“Idol” is still a huge revenue generator for Fox, bringing in $836.4 million in ad revenue last year, according to Kantar Media. Plus, it has nothing to replace it. Simon Cowell’s “The X Factor” is far from being “Idol’s” heir apparent after failing to meet ratings expectations over its first two seasons. It, too, is undergoing another round of changes for Season 3, with pop star Britney Spears and record executive L.A. Reid not returning.
“Idol’s” problems are compounded by the success of NBC’s “The Voice.” Currently airing its fourth season, the show recently crossed a milestone when it beat “Idol” (and everyone else on the small screen for that matter) in both total viewers and the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demographic. Additionally, “The Voice” took “Idol’s” spot in the Emmy race last year, replacing it among the nominees in the Outstanding Reality Competition category.
I haven’t watched American Idol in years. It got boring as hell. And it really wasn’t the same after Simon left. Remember when they tried Ellen? And Steven Tyler? They had no idea what they were doing and neither did the audience. I’m surprised it still generates so much ad revenue.
Anyway, EFF YEAH, because it is EFFING RIDICULOUS to give people that much money to essentially cohost a talent contest. I guess they’re keeping Seacrest though.