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Fox Exec Slams 'American Idol' for Returning So Soon

Fox Exec Slams 'American Idol' for Returning So Soon

American Idol aired on Fox for 15 years and now will be moving to ABC for a reboot in 2018. Fox TV chairman Dana Walden is opening up to blast the show’s producer FremantleMedia for bringing the show back so soon.

Walden told reporters that Fox offered to bring the show back in 2020 as it would be too soon to come back before then.

“They were determined to get this show back on the air as quickly as possible,” Walden said on the call. “We spent about $25 million sending a clear message that it was the farewell season. It felt to us it would be extremely fraudulent to bring the show back quickly, that fans would not appreciate being told one thing and then having the show brought back right away.”

Dana says that Fox would have continued with the show if they could make it more cost-effective, but Fremantle did not “want to take significant trims.”

“They didn’t want to test out a new panel — they felt like it had taken a long time to find the chemistry they had with [Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez, and Harry Connick Jr.]. They ultimately said to us they would rather rest the show after this season rather than make any changes, and that’s when we decided to call it the farewell season,” she said.

Click inside to read what else Dana Walden said about Idol’s reboot…

“[FremantleMedia parent RTL Group] lost revenue from not having this show on in the U.S. — that’s meaningful when you’re running a public company,” Walden added (via EW). “And all of a sudden we were made aware of conversations with ABC to bring the show back in 2018, which, again, would put it off the air for one season. And we again felt like this is way too soon. We tried to engage Fremantle in conversations about bringing it back in 2020 which is when we thought would be an appropriate amount of time off the air, and could give the producers and creators the opportunity to make some changes that could present the next generation of Idol, and they really just weren’t interested in that. They wanted it back on the air and thought ABC was a good opportunity.”

“We thought it was too early to bring the show back. All of our research and all of our fan forums supported that notion. We did not see the fan excitement and enthusiasm for the show to come back that Fremantle did. We just had a different set of facts,” she concluded.

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Photos: Fox
Posted to: American Idol, Television

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