'American Idol' Season 3 Judges Announced: Katy Perry, Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan Returning

The reboot of American Idol is officially returning for a third season on ABC, with judges Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie all confirmed to reprise their roles for another season of attempting to find America's next star.

Variety reports that ABC announced the news on Monday and added that Bobby Bones will return as the show's in-house mentor.

"'American Idol' is the original music competition series," ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke said in a statement. "It was the first of its kind to take everyday singers and catapult them into superstardom, launching the careers of so many amazing artists. We couldn't be more excited for Katy, Luke, Lionel and Bobby to continue in their roles as 'American Idol' searches for the next great music star, with more live episodes and exciting, new creative elements coming this season."

American Idol is produced by Fremantle and Industrial Media's 19 Entertainment, and discussions had reportedly been taking place between Fremantle and ABC regarding ways to bring the show's costs down. Perry had notably been taking home a $25 million salary, and the negotiations had some speculating that the judging lineup would change for the third season.

Perry, Bryan and Richie previously told PEOPLE that they were all for returning to the competition show.

"What would it take? The same thing we did this year," Richie told PEOPLE. "We got the three greatest personalities ever on this show. When I started with this group I was a bit worried. I kept telling America to pray for me, but now that I know everybody and their characters, I would not do another show without them!"

"You know, we've had an amazing two years," Bryan added. "It feels like this year we came in and had a clearer vision and developed our identity and our role. We want to keep that going. We're proud of what people at home are watching. I mean, I know Lionel and Katy are getting it when we walk down the street when somebody comes up and says, 'We love the way you're treating these kids on American Idol.' It truly feels really great."

Variety reported that ABC wants to make Idol a "long-term network franchise," but only if costs can come down. The reductions will reportedly happen across the board, including for key talent, and show host Ryan Seacrest is believed to be under a long-term deal.


The show initially premiered on Fox in 2002 and ran for 15 seasons through 2016. The new season of Idol will premiere in spring 2020, and auditions have already taken place in New York City. Auditions will be held at a number of other cities beginning with Mobile, Alabama on Aug. 20.

Photo Credit: Getty / Amy Sussman