The votes are in! After a season of unacceptably low ratings, TV Line reports that American Idol is doing away with executive producers Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick after the twelfth season’s ratings fell more than 20 percent.
Both men have been with Idol since its launch in 2002, though Lythgoe left the show during seasons eight and nine but returned for the tenth season. The duo also worked on Idol’s predecessor Pop Idol, the British version of the show. Additionally, the Wrap claims alternative programming chief Mike Darnell made a sudden exit from the show Memorial Day weekend.
During the twelfth season, judges Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj announced that they were leaving at the season’s end. Long-time judge Randy Jackson also announced his departure at season’s twelve’s finish, leaving Keith Urban as the only man remaining on Idol’s panel.
Rumors of the new judging panel have been circulating. The Wrap reports that former Idol contestants Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson and Adam Lambert or Clay Aiken will replace Carey, Minaj and Jackson.
Though Fox has yet to execute any contracts, an inside source reported to the Wrap that a deal has been made with Hudson that she would receive a 5.5 million dollar salary, but the show’s executive claims the actual amount is around 4 million. The other potential judges have yet to have contracts drawn up with the show.
It is obvious that Idol is undergoing some needed changes, but will so many adjustments cause the show to plummet further? Devoted viewers, those who remain, will anxiously await the return of American Idol for its thirteenth season.