British TV mogul Simon Fuller is the real winner of American Idol
…We’re still a goliath, Mr Fuller told The Times, referring to the status of the show ‘ a spin-off from Britain’s Pop Idol ‘ as the most-watched show in the US. …We’re still bigger than anything else, and now David Cook is going to sell millions of records for us.
At the party on Wednesday Mr Fuller promised radical changes for next season, with rumours suggesting that a fourth judge would be hired to join Mr Cowell, Ms Abdul and Randy Jackson.
…There’s going to be a big shake-up, confirmed Mr Cowell, who spent most of Wednesday evening with the $12.5 million-a-year host of Idol, Ryan Seacrest. …You’ll see.
‹Idol Tries to Keep Viewers Guessing
Among the changes being discussed, according to people involved in the show production, who spoke on condition of anonymity because decisions have not yet been made, are lowering the minimum age for contestants, which is now 16. (Mr. Cowell predicted in a recent television interview that it would soon be lowered to 14.)
In addition, the programmers are exploring whether to modify the several weeks of episodes that open the season in January. Traditionally those episodes are given over to taped segments of the previous summer stadium-size auditions. One idea under consideration is to start the season with an extended version of Hollywood Week, narrowing the field to 24 contestants from about 200, and interweaving those more intimate auditions with tapes of the first-round tryouts, which attract as many delusional fans eager to grab the spotlight as they do serious contenders.
The Daughtry That Won
Im thinking about what Im going to do for the next couple of months with all the freed-up time Im going to have, precious moments that I normally spend watching and rewatching this show and writing these recaps. The kitchen needs painting. The shower needs to be recaulked. There are records to buy. I just got long-dead metal band Hellhammer Demon Entrails and it pretty sick. I think Ill be playing that a lot in the next week to sort of cleanse my listen-holes of all American Idol music-barf. I was also planning on making that fancy apple-and-pear-chutney turkey burger I saw being made on Oprah last week. That looked pretty tasty for a turkey burger. And I hate turkey burgers. Or I could volunteer my time at some charity and, you know, …give back.
Idol’s David Cook is your Idol. Did America get it right?
Kristen Baldwin and I answer that question, and ponder the fates of the two Davids, on the Idolatry season finale. Press play, then weigh in with your own thoughts on the Idol season in the comments section below. And don’t forget to check back next week for video interviews with Syesha Mercado, Mr. Cook, and Mr. Archuleta. (Oh, and can we get three million snaps for Idolatry producer Jason Averett? Without him, there would be no Wonder Woman, no Mechagodzilla, no Bambi…none of the 5 hours, 18 minutes, and 34 seconds of Idolatry magic we’ve posted on EW.com over the last five months. I’m not sure if he’s slept or eaten since January, which makes his special brand of genius all the more impressive!)
Fox wins TV season on strong ‘Idol’ finish
With a strong finishing kick from “American Idol, ” Fox captured the distinction of America’s most popular television network for the first time since it began operation in 1987.
Fox took that title from CBS. It was the only major broadcast network with more prime-time viewers than the previous season, a distinction helped by its telecast of the Super Bowl. Fox didn’t show television’s biggest event during the 2006-7 season.
The competition between the two Davids on “American Idol” ‘ winner David Cook and runnerup David Archuleta ‘ was seen by 31.7 million people on Wednesday, according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research estimates. Last year’s finale, won by Jordin Sparks, drew 30.7 million viewers.
It was a heartening finish for Fox executives, who admitted to concern when the ratings for TV’s most popular show faded in recent weeks.
Grading the iTunes Hits:
David Cook: “Time of My Life.” This is the song that won the annual American Idol songwriters’ contest, and it’s exactly the sort of overblown treacly silliness that always wins that thing. None of these songs are ever any good, and “Time of My Life” abuses nonsensical Hallmark-card cliches particularly vigorously. Cook actually has to sell a line about “looking for that magic rainbow on the horizon.” Seriously, who, in 2008, sits down with a piece of paper and a pen and comes up with “magic rainbow”? And how does that song then go on to win a contest of any kind? The assembly line exists for a reason. The song is concerns the nebulous concept of living life to the fullest or whatever, just like all the rest of them, and so Cook gets to promise us that he’ll “taste every moment and live it out loud, ” which is, at best, a mixed metaphor. The good news is that Cook’s elegantly grizzled growl is uniquely suited toward making a mess like this work. He’s shameless enough to treat a nothing like this like it was “Everybody Hurts, ” and the way he builds from the gurgley snarls on the intro to a big drawn-out lung-busting note at the end shows that he’s already a pro. And the song’s construction is time-tested big-payoff power-ballad; I especially like the backing-vocal ahh-ahhs on the chorus. That Cook can make anything of this song is a minor miracle, and it bodes well for what might happen if Clive Davis starts throwing actual good songs his way. This mess immediately shot to #1 on iTunes pretty much the minute it was released, but it’s not for sale there anymore, which doesn’t make any sense at all. 5.7
Latest ‘Idol’ Cook praises Ford
Ford Motor Co. is getting some much-needed celebrity endorsement from America’s newest celebrity, David Cook.
The singer, who became the latest “American Idol” Wednesday, told The Detroit News Friday that he can’t wait to get some quiet time behind the wheel of the Ford Escape Hybrid the automaker gave him.
“I love it. It’s nice to have a new car, ” said Cook, whose last ride was a 1996 Jeep Cherokee that he admits he ran into the ground. “Ford has been amazing throughout the whole process. I definitely could see this as the start of something.”
Kirby: Mormons are ready-made for reality TV
Another Mormon bites the dust. After a brief and heady run at fame, “American Idol” candidate David Archuleta got his walking papers from the voting public.
Brother Archuleta joins the ranks of other LDS reality TV almost-weres, including “Dancing with the Stars'” Marie Osmond, MTV’s “That’s Amore’s” Kathleen Flager, and presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
Still, Archuleta is proof that Mormon reality screen performance is improving. Ten years ago, our claim to reality TV fame was a Mormon couple performing a human bagpipe trick on “David Letterman.”
I didn’t see this one myself, but apparently a woman from Murray put a balloon in her mouth and her husband inflated it by blowing through her nose.
You don’t get public performing talent (or even a lack of shame) like this without years of training. From an early age, Mormon kids are encouraged to be something other than just another member of the congregation.
Archuleta and his family are upbeat after the loss
LOS ANGELES – Jeff Archuleta of Murray sat under a white tent with two of his five children Wednesday night, rock music blaring in the background. His son had just come in second on “American Idol, ” but he still sported a grin.
“I’m content, ” he told The Salt Lake Tribune. “That’s the best way I can describe how I feel right now. I’m so proud of what he’s accomplished.”
The father of 17-year-old David Archuleta was celebrating the show’s season end at an “after-party” on the rooftop of the NOKIA Theatre parking garage. He was ecstatic about what his oldest son had done – even after his David lost the title to Missouri’s David Cook on television’s biggest series.
Even after volleys of bad press accusing Jeff Archuleta of being a horrible stage dad.
Even after his son turned in his best performance of the season Tuesday and still couldn’t win.
“You know what? It doesn’t matter, ” he said. “[David] still won.”
American Idol Makeup guru Mezhgan Hussainy tells all
…I love the big transformations, gushed …American Idol makeup guru Mezhgan Hussainy in a phone interview last week. Every season, as we watch country cuties like Carrie Underwood morph into full-blown superstars, Mezhgan is the woman behind the blush brush. This year, Mezhgan was most impressed by Syesha Mercado transformation from bohemian queen to old-Hollywood glamorpuss.
But it not just the ladies who benefit from Mezhgan artistry. The gentlemen clock some serious time in her makeup chair as well. Mezhgan disguises their perpetual exhaustion with primer, foundation, and a little bit of bronzer. But the …Idol men werent always as bronzer-friendly as they are today. Season 2 Ruben Studdard, for instance, wasnt having it. …I remember when I said, ‹Im ready for you in makeup, laughed Mezhgan. …He was like, ‹Uh, what are you talking ‹bout?ƒ ¢Ã¢â€š ¬
GLOWing mix-up benefits local ministry
An idol, a Web site, a blog and a goof-up have resulted in a charity hauling in an unusual amount of donations.
And at this point, no one complaining.
It all started when singer-musician Jason Castro, a contestant on the Fox television show …American Idol, had webmaster Ariel Davies of Oslo, Norway, place a link to the artist favorite charity ‘ called Glow ‘ on his official Web site, daydreamingboy.com.
Davies found Zeeland-based GLOW Ministries International Web site (www.glowmi.org) and made the link. GLOW, an acronym for God Love for Orphans and Widows, is a faith-based nonprofit dedicated to fighting poverty and hunger in Haiti.
Jesse McCartney, Ace Young rock Mayfair
Opposites attract, as the old clichÃƒÆ’ © goes. Such was the case for the Cabaret Stage at Mayfair on Friday night, when acoustic rock met urban/R&B and when a relatively new career met an established but changing career.
More specifically: when Ace Young and Jesse McCartney shared the stage, resulting in a night that proved to be both surprising and surprisingly predictable.
Very few entertainers could successfully sandwich an acoustic performance between two electric sets and a national headlining act. Ace Young, best known for appearing in season five of ” American Idol, ” graciously and charismatically accomplished the task at hand.
Brooke Barrettsmith Releases Debut Album
Chicago rocker Brooke Barrettsmith is releasing her self-titled debut album on August 19. Barrettsmith is best known for being in the Top 40 on Season Five of American Idol along with friends Chris Daughtry, Mandisa, and Katherine McPhee. Her debut album is produced by Aaron Sprinkle (Jeremy Camp, Kutless, The Almost) and Rob Hawkins (Fireflight, Jackson Waters) and her first radio single “Farewell” is currently impacting listeners everywhere.