The lineup of judges for American Idol will remain the same next season.
Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Ritchie have all agreed deals to come back to the series, alongside host Ryan Seacrest.
The news comes around four months after ABC renewed the talent show for a fourth season at the network. Like many of its un-scripted counterparts, Idol was disrupted by the coronavirus towards the end of last season, and was forced into filming remote episodes for the first time in its history.
Rather than its traditional tour of America to find the next big music superstar, the upcoming season will be cast using via remote virtual auditions taking place across every state.
“American Idol has always been able to bring people together, entertain and inspire – and I am so proud of how this show continued to deliver joy and laughter into people’s homes during a time when we needed it the most,” said Karey Burke, president of ABC Entertainment. “There is no one who we feel more confident about leading us into a new season of high notes than Luke, Katy, Lionel and the incomparable Ryan Seacrest.”
“Katy, Lionel and Luke are fun, astute and really know how to spot talent,” said executive producer and showrunner Trish Kinane. “Their chemistry is undeniable, and we are delighted that they, along with host Ryan Seacrest, are returning to find the next superstar and take American Idol to new heights next season.”
One American Idol stalwart with a question mark still over his head is regular mentor Bobby Bones. Sources close to the show say that Bones is still working out logistics for his return.
American Idol is produced by Fremantle and Industrial Media’s 19 Entertainment. Executive producers other than Kinane include Jennifer Mullin and Megan Wolflick, with Holzman and Aaron Saidman serving as executive producers for 19 Entertainment. Fremantle distributes the series worldwide.
“We are so grateful to the fans for sticking with us – and pushing us to No. 1 – during this most challenging of times. And we are thrilled to be able to welcome Ryan, Katy, Lionel and Luke back to help us discover our next American Idol,” added executive producer Eli Holzman, CEO of 19 Entertainment’s parent company Industrial Media. “At times like these, it is more important than ever to give families wholesome entertainment, packed full of hope, talent and inspiration – where dreams come true. And that is what American Idol is all about.”