American Idol season 19 Judges Round has begun filming, and unsurprisingly, the production is staying in California.
American Idol judges auditions will film in California
The veteran talent competition will likely undergo the most changes of all the talent shows. Unlike The Voice and America’s Got Talent, which fly the talent to California to audition at a central location, American Idol judges travel to different locations all over America to audition hopefuls.
According to Deadline, American Idol began filming Judges Auditions on October 5 at a number of locations across California, because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Judges Lionel Richie, Luke Bryan and Katy Perry, who gave birth in August, are back with host Ryan Seacrest, reports Deadline. However, instead of all sitting at the same table, the three judges will have separate tables and there will be zoning in place for interacting with others.
Contestants will audition in California under rigorous COVID protocols
Contestants will be traveling to each of the auditions from all over the country, but the team, led by executive producer Trish Kinane, have put in place “rigorous” health and safety protocols to keep everybody on set safe.
Cast and crew are all being tested in accordance with local, state, union and industry guidelines from organizations including the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), federal, state, local government and health agencies and medical professionals. There will also be social distancing on set and cast and crew will be required to wear masks when not on camera.
Earlier this summer, American Idol conducted open calls in all 50 states using Zoom technology in place of the usual bus tour across America.
Kinane also produces America’s Got Talent for Freemantle, which recently filmed their live shows all over the Universal Studios lot, but also live in front of the judges.
Last April, American Idol returned to production in the middle of a COVID-19 shutdown. That meant everyone involved did their thing from home. Now, months into the pandemic, with new protocols in place, talent shows are filming in California, but with serious safety rules in place.
Currently, Dancing with the Stars, The Bachelor/Bachelorette, Masked Singer and more are taping/broadcasting live shows with virtual audiences and COVID safety protocols in place.