What was wrong with American Idol last season? Nigel Lythgoe, president of Idol's production company 19 Television, thinks it was too much Peter Noone and not enough Melinda Doolittle. In other words, "We didn't really show the personalities of the people," he told reporters at the Television Critics Association press tour on Sunday. "We were so engrossed with the mentors who were particularly good last season, and not really on the Melindas. And we didn't know them as much as we knew the Kellie Picklers from the season before." What happened on Idol led Lythgoe to make adjustments to this summer's So You Think You Can Dance. "We've really gone out of our way to focus on the competitors' thoughts, their feelings, their emotions," he said, "so that we're all attached to them a little more than if they were just dance competitors." Reporting by Stephen Battaglio
They're visiting 42 cities in just 68 days. But touring as a performer with American Idols Live isn't all work and no play. Speaking with TV Guide during her Nashville, Tennessee, homecoming, Melinda Doolittle spoke of massages on demand, an abundance of toaster pastries and her hankering for some 24.
TV Guide: How's the tour going?Melinda Doolittle: It is so much fun! We're having a blast.
TV Guide: Is it everything you hoped it would be?Melinda: It is, and a lot more. I thought that maybe I knew what to expect because I had toured before, but it's like night and day for me. They pay such attention to detail.
TV Guide: What kind of details do they pay attention to?Melinda: They take good care of us. They make sure that we're taken care of as far as food goes, of cours
Thirty-one million viewers watched live as she became the reigning American Idol. But, despite the Nielsen ratings, Jordin Sparks still insists her face isn't nearly as recognizable as her name. Hours before she took the stage in Sunrise, Florida, with the American Idols Live tour, the Season 6 winner spoke with TV Guide.
TV Guide: When did you get to Florida?Jordin Sparks: We got to Florida on the 1st, so we've been here for a week, you know, tanning and soaking up the sun and rehearsing....
TV Guide: Have you done any sightseeing yet?Jordin: We had a day off where I rode the WaveRunners and we all just kind of chilled. It was really fun.
TV Guide: Was that your first time on a WaveRunner?Jordin: It's like a Jet Ski, which I
American Idol may be over but Idol Gives Back is still going strong. In an exclusive interview with TV Guide, Melinda Doolittle revealed shes traveling to Africa this week with First Lady Laura Bush. The top 10 finalist will represent the reality show in an awareness campaign to help curtail the spread of malaria. Were giving out half a million bed nets, says the former backup singer, who will spend a week on the trip. Mosquitoes normally bite between 10 pm and 4 am. So the best-case scenario is to have this net, which is interwoven with insecticides. Not only do they land on it, but they die, so they dont spread it to other people.Doolittle will also perform Amazing Grace with a childrens choir, which she calls a lifelong dream. We think it is terrific that Melinda Doolittle is joining Mrs. Bush in Zambia," says Sally McDonough, Mrs. Bush's spokesperson. "Viewers of one of America's favorite television pr...
A trio of American Idol finalists — runner-ups Melinda Doolittle and Blake Lewis, and winner Jordin Sparks — will celebrate our nation's birthday in song on NBC's Macy's 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular. Just two days later, they will join their fellow finalists to launch the Idols Live tour in Sunrise, Florida.