Fox recently announced the ninth season of America Idolwill premiere on Tuesday, January 12 at 8pm ET/PT. The season will premiere for two consecutive nights with a two-hour broadcast on Tuesday and a one-hour broadcast on Wednesday, January 13 at 8PM ET/PT.
The auditions for American Idol took place over the summer and featured several guest judges in Paula’s spot including Victoria Beckham in Denver and Boston, Mary J. Blige in Atlanta, Joe Jonas and Neil Patrick Harris in Dallas, Kristin Chenoweth inOrlando, Shania Twain in Chicago,and Katy Perry and Avril Lavigne in Los Angeles.
In other Idol news, Kris Allen’s self titled album dropped at No. 11 on The Billboard 200 album sales chart after selling only 80,000 copies during its week of release, according to Nielsen Soundscan data. This is the lowest of any idol winner ever recorded. Before Kris, Jordin Sparks, sixth season winner previously held the record for lowest album sales and sold 119,000 copies in first week release in November 2007.
Those figures are especially low compared to the 198,000 albums sold by runner up, Adam Lambert, who has remained in the headlines due to his recent raunchy performance at the American Music Awards.
Even though Paula Abdul is leaving the show, American Idolwill still have four judges, Fox chairman Peter Rice told the FOX Television Critics Association on Thursday.
“There is going to be a search,” he said. The search is for a permanent replacement, while there will be guest judges taking her place during the auditions.
According to Peter, the producers “were hoping” Abdul would come back. “We love Paula. She’s been a really wonderful part of the show for eight years.”
Sources say that Paula asked for a $20 million deal which producers were unwilling to meet. She also rejected a thirty percent raise.
According to FOX, guest judges including Victoria Beckham and Katy Perry will join Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi in the seven weeks of audition rounds, which starts Friday in Denver.
“We’ll have these guest judges do one week each during the audition [period]… there is no thought right now that any of these judges will be long term judge for us,” Rice said. “All of the people we are talking to have successful careers. I don’t even think they’d be available to judge full-time. We have now until January to introduce a new energy to the panel.”
There are also rumors that Kandi Burruss of The Real Housewives of Atlanta is being considered as a judge, but those are simply rumors for now.