Fans are on the edge of their seats waiting to hear if Ryan Seacrest will make a return to American Idol or if he'll finally tap out, but according to former Idol winner David Cook, there's a good chance the famous host will sign on for another season.
"I think he will," Cook said in an exclusive sit-down with PopCulture.com. "Listen, the guy doesn't need sleep, it's like the weirdest thing. The guy works — even when I was on the show — it was like 20 hours a day."
Cook adds that as long as Seacrest, who is also working on ABC's Live With Kelly & Ryan every weekday morning, "enjoys the work," he sees him coming back, admitting how "he is quintessentially that show."
Seacrest got his start on the popular singing competition when it first started back in 2002. But little did fans know at the time, that the 44-year-old would soon turn into an absolute superstar and staple of primetime television and a beloved radio personality.
As for Cook, the Missouri native rose to fame after his memorable win during Season 7 in 2008, with David Archuleta as runner-up. Since then, the musician has continued to put out music, toured across the country and is still a fan-favorite among millions of viewers.
"I'm getting to do stuff now that like, if you'd asked me at like 25, 'Are you gonna be able to do this stuff in your 30s?' I'd be like, 'No way,'" Cook admitted when asked if Idol changed his life.
Over the years, the popular show went from being so well-known for its not-so-great auditions, to further popularizing the judges panel. But since Cook was not just a fan and contestant, but a winner too, he hopes that the show will continue to be about the contestants.
"I think for me, I think as somebody who benefited from it and went through it, my hope for the show has always been — as long as it can continue to be a platform for the contestants, then I'm game, I'm all in," Cook admitted. "I think you always kind of toe that line between, is it about the contestants or is it about the judges panel? When Idol was at its best, it was a platform to really, as a viewer, invest in these contestants and follow them through their careers. I think as long as it's that platform, I'm in."
The original judges panel started with Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson, to now, Katy Perry, Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan, while also featuring several other celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr. in between.
"I was really pleasantly surprised with the panel," Cook said. "I was kind of on the fence at the start, but I think they seem genuinely interested in helping these contestants out, which is a big part of it."
A little more than 10 years may have passed since Cook's shining moment on the Idol stage, but he hasn't stopped giving his fans what they want.
"I'm currently writing for a new EP — I think that's what it's gonna end up being. So I've got a few songs in the can that I'm really excited about and then as we continue to write, it'll be that game of top it, I've got these songs — can I write better than that? Eventually, I'll have to stop and put them out," he laughed.
The musician is currently in "studio mode" right now, which he admits is exciting since "it's one of [his] favorite things" about the gig.
Cook, who also earned himself a theater scholarship during his college years despite abandoning the craft after two semesters, reignited that love with Kinky Boots on Broadway in 2017 — something he aspires to one day return to once again.
"I hope so, I kind of missed out on some auditions last year. I got done with Kinky Boots and then two weeks before an acoustic tour I broke my hand, so I was unable to do a lot of auditioning," Cook said.0comments
While Cook wishes there was a cool story to how he broke his hand, he says he was taking his dogs out, then got caught up in the leash and "gravity won."
His new single "Death of Me" is available now. Visit his official website for more information.