Nigel Lythgoe told TMZ what I believe is true; Ryan Seacrest is truly indispensable on the show.
“Ryan Seacrest drives the entire program,” he said. “He’s not on an earpiece or anything. He’s not beholden to anybody. He controls the show. He’s really important.”
I agree. I believe the moment he leaves would be the most blatant sign the show is on its last legs. It’s not there yet. But the show does return tonight at 8 p.m. Interestingly, the AJC print edition for the first time since season one did not request a story about “Idol.”
“Yes, there are too many of these shows on the air, and they are taking each other down a little bit, but this is still the king of the shows,” said Mike Darnell, president of alternative entertainment at Fox. “This is the one, and only one, that makes stars. Period.”
I was quoted in the USA Today story about “American Idol.” Here’s my excerpt.
Atlanta Journal-Constitution blogger Rodney Ho, who writes about Idol, calls the 45-minute auditions preview “The Nicki Minaj Show” and says she “kind of sucked the oxygen out of the room, for better or for worse.” Add that to the fact there are now four judges, instead of three, and that could cause problems, he says.
“I think the show always gets bogged down when they bring in four judges,” he says. “I think the live shows are going to have serious problems, because Nicki is going to have a hard time being shut down.”
[She even admitted to Ellen DeGeneres she's not looking forward to the live shows. “I cannot trust myself,” Minaj said. You've been warned!]
“X Factor” winner Tate Stevens signs with Sony Nashville.
Season 9 “Idol” winner Lee DeWyze signs with Vanguard Records, which is also home to Matt Nathanson, Atlanta’s own Indigo Girls and Chris Isaak.