‘American Idol’ 2018 reboot not happening, show owners pull off the plug

By @jessicarapir on
American Idol
(L-R) Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell and Ryan Seacrest appear on stage during the American Idol Grand Finale in Hollywood, California, April 7, 2016. Reuters/Mario Anzuoni

Sad day for “American Idol” fans as the planned reboot in 2018 could not be happening at least in the near future. The show hit some negotiation bumps along the way.

It was earlier reported that NBC is interested in bringing the singing competition back on air. The last season of AI was aired last year on Fox.

However, “Idol” co-owners, Fremantle and Core, failed to reach an agreement on whether to accept NBC's offer, according to TMZ. Apparently, there were differences of opinion between the two owners with regards on which show, AI or “America's Got Talent,” would get primary treatment from NBC.

Freemantle also owns AGT which likewise airs on NBC. It was reported that the network’s initial plan is to alternate “Idol” with two other NBC talent shows, AGT and “The Voice.” Moreover, NBC will also have to cut down “The Voice” two seasons a year to just one.

“The Voice” has been one of the top-rated reality shows at NBC. However, the show has also shown a decline in ratings in its last season. The competition’s twelfth season premiered on Feb. 27 with Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani and Alicia Keys as coaches. The next cycle is due in September 2017.

According to TMZ, Core is not keen of the NBC offer. It added that the Core bosses felt Fremantle had a conflict of interest and is pushing AGT to be the cornerstone of a year-round talent competition. “America’s Got Talent” is currently NBC’s highest rating show in summer.

After “American Idol” bid its goodbye last year, creator Simon Fuller teased that the show will eventually come back and it will likely look different when that time comes. "There are loads of ideas being shared, and I’m deep in thought about how we can evolve Idol. We debuted at the very beginning of the digital world. So the next generation of Idol will be a lot more interactive, a lot more immersive," Fuller told the Hollywood Reporter last year.

If AI got rebooted, “Idol” long-time host Ryan Seacrest is expected to return since he has long-standing ties with NBC. As for the judges, original judge Simon Cowell is now with AGT. Jennifer Lopez currently stars in “Shades of Blue” and will lead NBC’s forthcoming “World of Dance.”

“American Idol” was the highest-rated TV show in the US from the 2003–04 season through the 2010–11 season. Its ratings peak in 2006 and recorded an average of 12.4 in the 18-49 demographic and 36.4 million total viewers. The show’s ratings began to drop in the later years. Its final season in 2016 averaged 2.2 and 9.1 million viewers.

The last season of AI also aired in Australia via Fox8 in 2016.