Published: Mon, March 12, 2018
Culture&Arts | By Laurence Reese

Katy Perry's hidden talent; 2 stars exit 'Grey's Anatomy'; new music; more

Katy Perry's hidden talent; 2 stars exit 'Grey's Anatomy'; new music; more

Click through the slideshow below to see where American Idol winners are now...

A former colleague of Hardy's confirmed her claims; an investigation by E! found only that there was "insufficient evidence". It has surely streamlined its fees, though talent salaries - $25 million for Katy Perry, a little more than $10 million for Seacrest - are as eye-popping as ever.

Perhaps sensing some general need for respite - from unpleasantness, cruelty, bullies - ABC resurrects an American Idol that's cozily familiar, reassuring even, with the franchise's recognizable markers intact and the spikier inclinations of previous incarnations left behind. We go out. We look for young, talented people.

"I have my career because of Idol", Alaina told The Boot and other reporters during a recent press conference.

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The mocking isn't coming from an acerbic British judge, or from any of the judges, but from the producing and editing.

This is evident throughout Sunday's two-hour ABC premiere, which follows auditions in New York, Los Angeles and Nashville.

The days of William Hung are not over for American Idol. In chasing a twist on the "Idol" or "The Voice" formula, several of these shows put too much emphasis on the mechanics and not enough on the actual performing. Soledad O'Brien hosts the two-hour special. "I think he'll do really well [as a judge.] He's kind, he's honest and he's. well, he's Luke Bryan". He doesn't tell people they're bad; he tells them that, for one reason or another, they're just not ready. In the premiere, they don't fully articulate their concerns, but they are concerned, even if that doesn't always affect their ultimate decision. "There's no dismissing and just sending off and saying, 'You suck.' That's not how we roll". Each superstar brings a very different background and genre to the role: Richie is the funk and soul veteran, Perry is the pop princess and Bryan is the country superstar. They even give themselves credit for doing that, another dig at The Voice, though an entirely earned one.

The show shares something in common with a few of ABC's other musical misfires: competition formats too complicated for their own good. I couldn't imagine how this could work.

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Richie said the goal is to find more than a singer: "We are looking for an artist, and that's going to require our expertise".

"I don't think we have to fight", says the singer.

In the early moments of Sunday's "American Idol" season opener - shortly after a Disney-ish, when-you-wish-upon-a-star voiceover cameo by Carrie Underwood - the familiar mug of Ryan Seacrest appears on screen and declares, "It's the dawn of a new era!"

"Pope: The Most Powerful Man In History", 7 p.m. (CNN): Premiere of series examining the history of the papacy; how the papacy and Catholicism started and spread throughout Europe.

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