American Idol Renewed for 21st Season Overall by ABC

American Idol 21 season renewed
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American Idol 21 season renewed
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Photo Credit: Josh Hallett

ABC has renewed American Idol for its 21st season, among other unscripted reality TV shows. 

American Idol dominated the ratings airwaves in the early 2000s. While it’s never quite reached the height of its early popularity, the singing competition will continue under the ABC umbrella for its 21st season. The current season of American Idol will wrap up its run on May 22. 

How did American Idol start?

Believe it or not, American Idol has its roots in Britain. The American version of the show is based on the British television series called Pop Idol. But the inspiration behind Pop Idol comes from a New Zealand-based reality talent series called Popstars. The UK’s version of Pop Idol was created by Simon Fuller and was produced by Nigel Lythgoe from 2001 to 2003. 

Fox bought the rights to the show in 2002 and named it American Idol: The Search for a Superstar. The mechanics of the show where singers advance to subsequent rounds created tension among fans as they rooted for their favorite contestants. The show also allows audience participation via voting through telephone or via text. 

Who are the winners of American Idol?

American Idol has produced some very talented singers that have gone on to have very successful careers. Some of the finalists who didn’t win have also enjoyed success. Curious about the winners of past American Idol competitions? Check out this list of past winners of American Idol.

  • 2002 Season 1 | Kelly Clarkson
  • 2003 Season 2 | Ruben Studdard
  • 2004 Season 3 | Fantasia Barrino
  • 2005 Season 4 | Carrie Underwood
  • 2006 Season 5 | Taylor Hicks
  • 2007 Season 6 | Jordin Sparks
  • 2008 Season 7 | David Cook
  • 2009 Season 8 | Kris Allen
  • 2010 Season 9 | Lee DeWyze
  • 2011 Season 10 | Scotty McCreery
  • 2012 Season 11 | Phillip Phillips
  • 2013 Season 12 | Candice Glover
  • 2014 Season 13 | Caleb Johnson
  • 2015 Season 14 | Nick Fridiani
  • 2016 Season 15 | Trent Harmon
  • 2017 Season 16 | Maddie Poppe
  • 2018 Season 17 | Laine Hardy
  • 2019 Season 18 | Just Sam
  • 2020 Season 19 | Chayce Beckham

The highest rated season in American Idol history is Season 5, which averaged 30.6 million viewers each episode. It was also the first time the show was broadcast in HD for the first time.