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American Idol Returns to ABC After One Season Hiatus

“American Idol” will air on ABC during the 2017-18 season, returning to television after a one-season hiatus, the network announced Tuesday.

Disney/ABC President Ben Sherwood promised “a bigger, bolder and better- than-ever `Idol,”‘ without providing specifics. The host and judges will be announced at a later date.

“American Idol” ran on Fox from 2002 though 2016. It was prime-time television’s most-watched program for a record eight consecutive seasons from the 2003-2004 to 2010-2011 seasons.

In its final season on Fox, “American Idol” won its Wednesday 8 p.m. time slot, among both total viewers and viewers ages 18-49, the group targeted by Fox, ABC and NBC and coveted by advertisers.

Its Thursday episodes were second in the time slot behind CBS, whose lineup included “The Big Bang Theory.”

“`American Idol’ is a pop-culture staple that left the air too soon,” ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey said.

The singing competition launched the careers of Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Katharine McPhee, Adam Lambert and Chris Daughtry. Its contestants have sold more than 60 million albums, resulting in more than 80 platinum records and 95 gold records.

“American Idol” received 67 Emmy nominations during its run on Fox, with nine wins, including the prestigious Governors Award in 2016, awarded annually to an individual or achievement “that is so exceptional and universal in nature, it goes beyond the scope of annual Emmy Awards recognition,” according to the academy.

“American Idol” alumni have won 14 Grammys and an Oscar.

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