Remember when the three American Idol judges (Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban, and Harry Connick Jr.) stood on the stage for what was supposed to be the last time, with host Ryan Seacrest trying to find the words to express what the singing competition had meant to him? Well, get ready for deja vu all over again, with new reports revealing that American Idol is headed for a revival. But there’s suspense in those reports, because that reboot is rumored to be aired on the same network as The Voice, which consequently could mean dramatic changes for that show.
When and if American Idol returns, those leading the show have their eyes on both Jennifer Lopez and Kelly Clarkson to take on major roles in the singing competition revival, according to Hollywood Life.
“NBC and Freemantle want Kelly Clarkson, 34, to be a part of the show,” a source told Hollywood Life. “Minus the obvious reasons surrounding her [American Idol] past, they feel Kelly would be a great judge.”
However, the insider also named Jennifer Lopez as the number one choice for an American Idol reboot.
“NBC wants [Jennifer Lopez] to be a part of it. She is the one person they would want to acquire before they figure anything else out.”
However, because Kelly Clarkson has experience with The Voice, the source described it as a “dream come true for producers” to have Clarkson join Lopez.
“They want to really make a splash upon the inevitable return,” added the insider.
When the original American Idol was broadcasting its final episodes, Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr. joined Jennifer Lopez in making history as the judges for the last three seasons, pointed out Rolling Stone.
“I really enjoyed doing this show,” revealed Urban. “There’s a genuinely family vibe on the show and I felt part of that immediately. [Host] Ryan [Seacrest] has that way about him.”
Lopez agreed, while expanding on what “everybody in America is going to miss about” American Idol.
“Just being able to watch dreams come true. It opened up a whole new avenue for people to find a way into the business.”
But it’s not just the lucky contestants whose lives changed through the power of American Idol. The judges’ lives changed as well. All three judges (Jennifer, Harry, and Keith) earned new recognition, and Connick was candid about it.
“There’s a lot of young people who are seeing me and hearing about me for the first time,” admitted Harry. “It’s interesting to see 10-, 12-, 15-year-olds say, ‘Hey, we know you from [American Idol],’ when so much of my career happened before they were born. It’s a great feeling.”
And Connick might have the opportunity to cherish that “great feeling” again if NBC takes on the singing competition. After American Idol exited following its history-making run of 15 seasons on Fox, it’s NBC who is rumored to be talking with the show’s producer, FremantleMedia, according to USA Today.
When American Idol went off the air, its creator Simon Fuller expressed his view that the singing competition could make a comeback. But what he didn’t say (and possibly never imagined) is that it could resurface as a companion show to The Voice.
In addition to The Voice, NBC has another reality TV competition, America’s Got Talent, starring American Idol executive producer and former judge Simon Cowell. But it’s The Voice that a reboot of American Idol would impact.
A revival of American Idol on NBC could give the network the opportunity to change from airing so many cycles of The Voice to broadcasting just one cycle every TV season. In its place, American Idol could rise from the ashes.
NBC already has connections with both Jennifer Lopez and Ryan Seacrest. Former American Idol judge Jennifer is one of the stars of NBC’s Shades of Blue and executive producer of an upcoming NBC competition series, World of Dance. Former American Idol host Ryan Seacrest also has ties to NBC Universal and its E! network.
Sources who are knowledgeable about the discussions regarding reviving American Idol told Variety that NBC is considering different options for a slot on its programming lineup, with one possibility dramatically changing The Voice.
“One possibility being considered: cutting NBC’s existing singing competition The Voice from two cycles a year to one.”
As for the possibility that American Idol could fit into the existing program schedule without an impact on the other shows, Variety noted that “it could be difficult for NBC to find a place for American Idol without making changes to its existing unscripted slate. ”
Currently, The Voice debuts new cycles in fall and mid-season, while America’s Got Talent rules the summer. Yet to be scheduled is NBC’s dance competition involving Jennifer Lopez, World of Dance.
[Featured Image by Jason Merritt/Getty Images]