UPDATE: I just heard for the PR Folks at ABC and here’s what they had to say:
American Idol was always scheduled to start airing only Sundays starting 5/2. The last episode airing on Monday’s was scheduled for 4/19.
She also added that XFinity probably made the mistake, and that the listings “are not correct at all” because no internal ABC schedule ever had it listed.
But for what it’s worth, the May Monday episodes were listed on the schedule at Futon Critic as well. And @IdolSpoilers posted the rumors about Monday episodes airing through to the finale weeks ago. Maybe ABC sent out schedules early on that were not correct. But it’s worth noting that the Disney movies are a brand new addition to the schedule, at least as far as the ABC announcement is concerned. The press release is dated April 28.
So…correction made and duly noted.
ABC posted a press release announcing that the network will be airing fan favorite Disney films on Mondays, all through the month of May. Originally, the network scheduled American Idol episodes to air all through May up until the Sunday Mary 23 three hour finale. Check out our rolling schedule for the season HERE. But obviously, plans changed.
ABC DID plan American Idol episodes. They are still scheduled on my DVR!
And I have the receipts that the American Idol episodes were pulled very recently .Here is my XFinity DVR schedule as of Thursday, April 29. AMERICAN IDOL IS STILL ON THE SCHEDULE!
Did low ratings lead to ABC pulling American Idol Monday shows from the schedule?
Did the network’s plans change because ratings for Monday night shows were mediocre? The first Monday Idol fell behind The Voice by 0.1 points in the 18-49 demo (0.7 vs 0.8). The second Monday Idol and The Voice were close to even (7.1 vs 7.8). The third Monday Idol saw The Voice pull ahead decisively (0.65 vs 0.83). The fourth Monday Idol actually pulled ahead of The Voice a little bit (0.77 vs 0.73) For the last Monday Idol, which featured 10 singers from last season, Idol only garnered a 0.59, and fell behind The Voice by nearly 0.3 points (0.59 vs 0.88). The Voice always bested American Idol in overall viewers.
It’s important to note that ratings have fallen for both American Idol and The Voice. If ratings impacted ABC’s decision to pull American Idol from Mondays, it may have more to do with the overall numbers, than how it performed against The Voice. Airing favorite Disney movies is a ton cheaper than producing three live American Idol episodes.
How did American Idol plan to format the pulled episodes?
Still, the question remains: How was American Idol originally planning to format the three pulled Monday shows? I initially speculated that the number of Monday episodes allowed for more performance/results shows with but with fewer eliminations. Two performance episodes back to back sure would be hectic, however. Or maybe American Idol planned a full blown Comeback competition, to run alongside the newbie competition, with the season 18 winner joining the newbies at or near the finale. A terrible idea, to be sure.
Check out ABC’s schedule of May Disney movies
In any case, check out what ABC plans to air against The Voice and beyond in May. The series is 5 weeks long and runs through to Monday May 31. The Disney films will not only serve as cheap programming for ABC, but will also promote their new streaming service Disney+. From the press release:
ABC is bringing more Disney magical moments into homes with the return of “The Wonderful World of Disney” film series on Monday nights beginning May 3. Throughout the entire month, ABC will air iconic titles currently available to stream on Disney+, beginning with the broadcast debuts of both Disney and Pixar’s “Finding Dory” and Academy Award®-nominated Disney and P+ixar’s “Incredibles 2,” followed by Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “Tangled” and “The Princess and the Frog,” and Academy Award-winning Disney and Pixar’s “Monsters, Inc.”
May 3 – Incredibles Z
May 10 – Finding Dory
May 17 – Monsters, Inc
May 24 – Tangled
May 31 – Princess and the Frog