Ryan Seacrest wants his buddy back.
“I would love to see him at some point back on television with me,” Seacrest told a group of news outlets, including TheTVPage.com.
“I think we had such an interesting chemistry. So I would love to see us be able to do something together.”
Earlier in the day, Fox Chairman and CEO Gary Wright said the network was in active negotiations with both Simon and former judging partner Paula Abdul — but not to have them rejoin the aging singing show.
IDOL, now in its 14th season, is enjoying a bounce in both ratings and general interest.
This season, the live shows will be compacted to include both performances and eliminations, Seacrest confirmed.
Here’s more of what he had to share:
How will the live shows work?
I am interested in doing these live shows this year because we are going to put them all in to one night where we have the format of performance and also the result. I think the intention will be to build the drama so that the result will come as the show goes on. But the voting (results that will be used) will be from the week before.
So someone might have to perform, even though they have already lost the vote?
Yes. They might.
Do you see any big stars coming out of this season?
What I believe they successfully accomplished this year was different colors. Different strokes. Different vibes. Different backgrounds. Different styles. Different textures. So I believe that the public will see a different kind of connection in that kind of texture this year.
Why do so many of the winners come from the south?
There may not be as much opportunity there. Look at Georgia and Phillip [Phillips] coming from there. How much opportunity is there for him growing up in Georgia, not being close to New York or LA. Maybe that is part of it. But there is also just great artistry and great musicianship coming from down south.
What keeps you coming back year after year?
I think I have a lot of respect for what this show did for me, personally and professionally. I believe in the promise of the show. I love that this show is about promise and journey. I was a kid in Atlanta who had a dream about being a DJ on the radio and being a TV host. To a degree this is that same thing, but for a singer. So I see a parallel universe.
You are a busy guy with a lot going on. At some point you must have considered moving on from the show?
I don’t know that I ever thought about stepping down. I know I always think about where this show is going. I remember when Simon left, [I was thinking], ‘Who is going to come in? Where is this show going?’ So it is less about stepping away from it and more about where is it going to go next.
So you never once considered leaving?
Didn’t really consider leaving. They may have considered me leaving. [laughs]
When contestants are eliminated, you are the one they sort of cling to on the way out the door. What is the key to dealing with that?
I think staying out of the way to a degree is the trick to it. I try and watch the ball and watch how the show is moving and read the body language of the contestants and step in just when necessary. But most of the time, just keep moving along and try to stay out of the way.
What do you say to the ones in the earlier rounds when they come out and they are crying?
I don’t think I have ever mastered the perfect thing to say to those contestants. It is always hard. I am not a parent, but I can only imagine when your kid is going through something tough, how do you know the right thing to say. So I try to do my best to encourage them to keep going for it and keep living their dreams and keep pursuing what it is that they want to do and believe in their passion.
You are the only one here who has had the who spectrum of perspective on AMERICAN IDOL. How has it changed?
I think the artists and the type of preparation they have has evolved significantly due to seeing the show, access to technology, access to music on line. So they come in a lot more savvy than they did in the beginning. And some of them are more thick skinned than they were in the beginning. There was a sensitivity at the start that isn’t necessarily there anymore.
What happened to your trademark opening: “This…is AMERICAN IDOL?”
If it is not in the [audition] shows, it will be in the live shows. No one has asked me to abandon it. I can’t think of anything more creative.
AMERICAN IDOL airs Wednesdays and Thursdays on Fox.
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