“Idol” Moves Into New Season With Luke, Lionel, & Katy Returning As Judges

American Idol / Instagram

New seasons of American Idol typically don’t debut until February. But production for a new season has to start months in advance so auditions can be held.

So even though the next season of Idol won’t premiere until next year, auditions are already underway. And since auditions are already underway, that means the judges have already been chosen.

Ever since Idol was rebooted on ABC in 2018 there has been the same panel of three judges: Luke Bryan, Lionel Richie, and Katy Perry. Fans were curious to know if the entire trio would return to judge the 2021 season, especially since Perry is due to give birth to her first child soon.

Idol held off on publicly naming the judges until Wednesday (August 19). Much to fans’ relief and delight, the show was happy to announce that Bryan, Richie, and Perry are all returning for the upcoming season!

The show also announced that longtime host Ryan Seacrest is returning as well.

Season 4 squad? IT’S A YES!Idol said on Instagram next to a collage of Seacrest, Perry, Richie, and Bryan.


Bryan, Richie, and Perry all celebrated the news on their own Instagram pages.

She’s gonna be a workin’ Mama WERKIN’ it on @americanidol for season 4!” Perry wrote. She also asked if it would be possible to bring in a high chair for her baby girl so she can sit next to the judges’ desk.

As for Richie, he said, “I can’t wait to say hello again during the next season of @americanidol!

Bryan showcased his excitement by saying, “Here we go! Season 4 of #AmericanIdol is going to be awesome!

Look below to read all three of the judges’ posts about their return to Idol.




We’re so happy to hear that Bryan, Richie, and Perry are coming back to judge Idol again. They’ve always worked well together in the past, as you can see in the clip below.

The new season of Idol may be a ways away, but this announcement makes its debut seem closer!