American Idol hires Lionel Richie and country music star Luke Bryan to judge with Katy Perry

Ryan Seacrest is the sole returning star.

The American Idol reboot has completed its judging lineup with a pop legend and a country music superstar.

 

Luke Bryan confirmed to fans on Twitter on Friday (September 29) that he'd be joining previously-announced judge Katy Perry, with ABC later announcing that five-time Grammy Award winner Lionel Richie would complete the trio.

ABC president Channing Dungey said on Friday: "Luke and Lionel are the perfect additions to round out our panel of judges for American Idol on ABC.

 

"In their respective genres of music, both Luke and Lionel possess insurmountable popularity and award-winning talent that are undeniable, and we are lucky that they will help in paving the way for hopefuls pursuing their dreams on our stage."

 

In his own statement, Luke Bryan put his decision to join American Idol down to a desire to "help some deserving artists reach their dreams".

 

"To be in a position in my career to help facilitate this along with the other judges is just a complete honour. It's gonna be a blast," he promised.

Richie added: "As a singer, songwriter and producer, I feel I can bring a great deal of experience to the table. It's going to be so much fun."

 

American Idol will officially bring Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie together for the first time ever next Wednesday (October 4) for an interview on Good Morning America.

 

Joining them will be American Idol host Ryan Seacrest, who is now the sole remaining link to the reality competition's 15 seasons on ABC's rival network Fox.

It became increasingly clear that ABC was aiming for an all-new judging lineup when original judge Simon Cowell said he had "no interest" in returning, and season 15's Keith Urban admitted he hadn't even been approached.

 

American Idol will premiere on ABC in 2018.

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