'American Idol' Loses Major Star Ahead of New Season

Bobby Bones just confirmed that he will not be returning to American Idol as an in-house mentor. Bones, a radio personality and host, first appeared on the series as a guest mentor for season 16 in 2018. He was promoted to a full-time mentor for season 17, remaining for seasons 18 and 19. He's been MIA from the forthcoming Season 20 promos, causing fans to wonder if he would be on the show's milestone year. As it turns out, his four-year run has come to an end. Bones made the announcement during an Instagram Q&A with fans.

"My contract with my new network won't let me do another show right now," Bones shared. "Love Idol, BTW. Was a great 4 years." He also mentioned that he's working on a new show, but can't share exact details as of yet. "The network hasn't even announced the show yet," he continued. "As soon as I can say [why I was in Costa Rica], I will…. But it's a really good show," hinting the show was being filmed in the tropical paradise.

Despite Bones' absence, the show's host, Ryan Seacrest, and judges Katy Perry, Luke Bryan, and Lionel Richie are returning for season 20. The show will premiere on Feb. 22 on ABC at 8 PM EST.

Bones has been busy as of late. He night co-hosted CBS' New Year's Eve Live: Nashville's Big Bash. He shared his co-hosting duties with Entertainment Tonight's Rachel Smith. 

Bones is also a two-time New York Times No. 1 bestselling author. Additionally, he works as a  touring stand-up comedian and philanthropist. Bones considers himself to be a jack of all trades. According to his previous ABC bio, Bones is the host of the nationally syndicated radio show, The Bobby Bones Show. The show broadcasts to over 170 stations and is the No. 1 Country morning show. Millions of listeners tune in weekly. 

The show has won multiple Country Music Association Awards for National Broadcast Personality of the Year. It also earned the title of youngest-ever inductee into the prestigious National Radio Hall of Fame for Bones.