Cue theme music* Thisss ... is a day Ryan Seacrest knew would come.
It was just over a year ago when the American Idol host, signing off the "final" (ahem) episode of the show after a 15-season run on Fox, said: "And one more time — this is so tough — we say to you from Hollywood, goodnight America." Then he added cryptically, "for now."
Well it looks like "for now" is over.
Thirteen months after Seacrest's sign off, ABC has a deal in principle with producer FremantleMedia to bring back American Idol, Mashable has confirmed. Idol could return as soon as March for a Sunday night slot, according to Variety, which first reported the revival deal on Friday afternoon.
Whether Seacrest — who hung in with Idol while literally every other on-camera person came, went and came back again — will return to the show remains unclear. The former Idol host just took a new co-hosting job on ABC's Live! With Kelly Ripa, meaning he'll have to move to New York. Idol, however, traditionally filmed in LA.
Of course, by no means does that mean that Seacrest (whose surname is a homonym for "seek rest." Just saying.) couldn't pull off gigs on two coasts. According to legend, if Seacrest — a TV producer, radio host, philanthropist, Kardashian whisperer, Illumnati aeronautics engineer, and vigilante crime-fighter — doesn't have at least seven full-time jobs going, he will detonate with enough force to level a city. Whatever, Google it.
Variety said ABC has yet to close its deal, which would exclude original Idol judge and boss Simon Cowell because of his exclusive deal with NBC. It also says that Kelly Clarkson may be brought onboard in some capacity.
American Idol was the No. 1 rated show in the U.S. for eight seasons after its 2002 debut, peaking around 37 million viewers. But those numbers dwindled year over year, and the final season saw its viewership fall beneath 10 million.