Join or Sign In
Sign in to customize your TV listings
Where will this year's winner land?
Get details on the Southern ceremony!
He's seeking to void his contracts with 19 Entertainment
Swedish TV producer Per Blankens will replace Nigel Lythgoe as executive producer of American Idol next season, Idol producer FremantleMedia announced Monday. Blankens has acted as showrunner on Sweden's version of the reality singing competition for five seasons. "He is extremely passionate about Idol and I'm very excited about his ideas and vision for keeping Idol creatively vibrant," Trish Kinane, an Idol executive producer for Fremantle, said in a statement. "He brings the talent and energy needed to keep American Idol strong."
It's the first day of shooting American Idol Season 12's Hollywood Week, and the judges are on their best behavior. ­Sitting side by side at the dais, five-time Grammy winner Mariah Carey and three-time nominee Nicki Minaj listen patiently, compare notes and whisper suggestions to each other as dozens of male contestants step forward to sing. Flanked by Aussie country crooner Keith Urban and Idol mainstay Randy Jackson (the only returning judge), the divas ­reveal a camaraderie that's a far cry from the antagonism they displayed just a few months earlier. In October, when ­auditions rolled through Charlotte, North Carolina, cell-phone-video footage of Carey and Minaj arguing over a ­contestant's performance was leaked on the Internet. "If you say one more disrespectful thing to me, off with your head!" Minaj threatened. "Why do I have a 3-year-old sitting around me?" countered Carey...