"American Idol" fans: We have our judges. Jennifer Lopez, Harry Connick, Jr., and Keith Urban will judge the show's 13th season, Fox announced Tuesday.
I'm on vacation today, so my analysis of the panel will come later. But for now, here's the press release from the network.
Grammy Award-winning and platinum-selling recording artist, actress, movie and television producer and entrepreneur Jennifer Lopez returns to AMERICAN IDOL XIII as a judge. Lopez will be joined by Grammy- and Emmy Award-winning multi-platinum singer, musician, songwriter, composer and film/television and Broadway actor Harry Connick, Jr. The two will sit on the IDOL judges’ panel with previously announced judge Keith Urban, the four-time Grammy Award-winning country artist who has sold more than 15 million albums.
Rounding out the team is IDOL veteran Randy Jackson, who will lend his industry and IDOL expertise to the contestants as an in-house mentor. Once again, the team will be led by Emmy Award-nominated host Ryan Seacrest, who has guided the IDOL contestants and judges through each season’s incredible journey.
Kevin Reilly, Chairman of Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company said, “AMERICAN IDOL has always been about discovering the next singing superstar, and next season our judging panel will deliver a most impressive combination of talent, wisdom and personality to do just that: Jennifer Lopez, the triple-threat global superstar who loves IDOL and whom IDOL fans love; Harry Connick, Jr., a bona-fide musical genius and fantastic IDOL mentor whose honesty and expertise can help turn these hopefuls into stars; Keith Urban, a multi-Grammy-winning artist who was such a positive force on the show last season. We are also very excited to have our friend Randy Jackson now in a new role as mentor, and the captain of our team – the heart and soul of IDOL – Ryan Seacrest returning as host.”
“#IDOL2014TheRemix,” tweeted Jennifer Lopez.
“I have always been a huge fan of AMERICAN IDOL and really enjoyed my time as a mentor on the show,” said Harry Connick, Jr. “And I am honored that they’ve asked me to be a judge this season. As an entertainer, I am truly excited to bring my perspective to AMERICAN IDOL, and to help emerging performers find their way.”
“Surprise, surprise! I am so happy to be back as part of this amazing show that started it all,” said Randy Jackson. “Season 1-3 is the place to be. The original talent show is back with a vengeance and ready to discover the best talent in America.”
“I think this season of IDOL is gonna be a blast,” said Keith Urban. ”New team, new energy and a whole new field of artists to be discovered and given a chance!”
“I couldn’t be prouder to be a part of the AMERICAN IDOL XIII family. Our new producers, judging panel and mentor are all fired up for this season,” said Ryan Seacrest. “I’ve already witnessed some amazingly talented contestants from around the country during our early auditions, cementing my belief that a new superstar is well within our sights.”
IDOL hopefuls will meet the AMERICAN IDOL XIII team when the auditions travel to Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Detroit, Omaha, Salt Lake City and San Francisco. AMERICAN IDOL XIII debuts in January 2014 on FOX.
Universal Music Group’s Interscope Records, under the direction of Chairman Jimmy Iovine, will continue to release IDOL winner and contestant music.
IDOL’s impact on the entertainment industry resonates beyond the scope of television. The series has brought generations together with a common goal: to discover the next music superstar. Over the past 12 seasons, IDOL finalists have released more than 200 albums, scored 396 No.1 Billboard hits, garnered more than 250 million iTunes downloads and have been certified with 95 Gold and 83 Platinum records. IDOL contestants have conquered Broadway, television and film and have won numerous awards and accolades, including American Country Music Awards, Country Music Awards, Grammy Awards and an Academy Award.