Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez were both asked why they decided to do the show. “Why am I doing this? I’m not sure yet,” Tyler answered. “I’ve got years of my father in me and this musicianship. When someone opens their mouth, I think I can see it, their character and what they’ve got.”
Later, Tyler revealed another reason why he wanted to do the show: Lopez’s movie, “The Back-up Plan.”
“I saw her be so vulnerable and so real and I immediately thought, ‘I want to sit next to that.’ I saw a vulnerable side that you really don’t see in someone of her elk.”
Lopez admits she was hesitant at first to do the show, but then realized she could put her past experience to good use on ‘Idol.’ “Where else can I put it to good use than by helping other artists? I’m so glad I made the choice.” She also joked that she was a “bedroom judge” when she watched previous seasons at home.
Returning judge Randy Jackson explained his judging persona has changed since Lopez and Tyler joined the show. “I think it’s changed a bit. You’ll see a little bit more of an assertive dawg, a little more hair on the dawg, if you will. Fewer yo’s, maybe more no’s, less dawg’s.”
Tyler gave a bit of a preview as to what people can expect to see at the judges’ table between the new trio. “I turn red in the face after I say something weird, she bails me out and Jackson says, ‘Woah!'”
Host Ryan Seacrest is excited to film the live shows with the new judging trio, even though he knows it will be different without his banter with Simon Cowell. “I don’t know what it’s like live yet, but I’m looking forward to it. I’m hoping it’s like a circus. You have to host is like it’s a sporting event,” he says. “I’m inspired by the new life here. I love it. Simon and I had our banter and people knew us for that but this is a whole new dynamic. There’s a genuine camaraderie for this crew.”
When asked about all the changes the show will be going through this season, executive producer Cecile Frotz-Coutaz says, “I think it’s important when you have such a change in your cast, you evolve with it. Otherwise, you’re putting a new cast in someone else’s show.”
Some of those changes include what some have been calling a Las Vegas round, which executive producer Nigel Lythgoe was quick to clarify:”It’s not really Las Vegas round. We went to Vegas because the Beatles show was in Vegas. The idea was they had to learn a Beatles song overnight.”
Contestants also have the opportunity to sing an original song for the first time in the show’s history. Lythgoe admits, “That’s going to be limited to a certain degree.” Frot-Coutaz elaborates, “Going forward, when you get to theme weeks, you’re back to covers for the most part.”
Hollywood Week has also been an extended an additional week, something producers decided to do in order for the audience to get to know the contestants better earlier on. Frot-Coutaz also admits the change was made because “the middle rounds of the show is a part of the show that has always been a bit of a weak point.”
The panel also addressed the decline in album sales for contestants from the last few seasons. “It’s about records,” Jackson explains. “The record has to be great. The mistake that people make is that they look at the show and think, ‘If I win, I’m guaranteed to be a success.'” Seacrest adds, “It shows you how hard it is to have a great record,” even with a springboard like the show.
Finally, when asked if the show will use a five-second delay due to Tyler’s use of foul language (he says ‘f*** a duck’ in the audition footage), he exclaims, “F*** no!”