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"American Idol" Reality Check

12/12/2008 11:35 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Our "American Idol" spies tell us Season 8 is going to look more like "Big Brother" than a true singing competition.

We're told producers have decided to show how the contestants interact with each other off the stage. They will show a lot more "behind the scenes" than ever before. But here's the problem -- the show is a cash cow and they've already taken time out of the singing competition for more commercials. Now they're going to take even more time out for the whole "bitch-you-stole-my-blouse" thing.

And we're now told firmly the new, fourth judge is not there to replace Paula. Producers think four is the magic number. The downside -- when one or two judges tell contestants they suck, is it overkill to hear it from four?

And no "Idol Gives Back" this coming season. After all, they gotta pay Simon ...

35 COMMENTS

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1.

adroc27    

I LOVE AI!! Can't wait for it to be back..

2105 days ago
2.

Tangie    

WHERE IS THE STORY ABOUT THE DEATH OF BETTIE PAGE????!!!!

2105 days ago
3.

David Maurice    

No Idol gives back, thats harsh considering how much they raise and how much good they say they do. get ride of the 4th judge and give a little to charity instead of hording it.

2105 days ago
4.

Jeansgeans    

OK Idol Listen UP to your fan base.Parents love this show because they can watch it with their kids.Kids can watch it with out the cursing and bickering that goes on in most reality shows. Keep it status quo or you will loss viewers.The whole fourth judge thing fine,No "Idol Gives Back" bad move.

2105 days ago
5.

Aprilfaery    

The fourth judge thing is because they are fairly sure Paula is leaving. They can say it isn't... but timing is everything. Frankly, I don't want to see the behind the scenes crap. I vote based on talent. And no Idol gives back... just bad business. It has been a HUGE charitable money maker and makes the show more popular.

2105 days ago
6.

p51d007    

ANYTHING that causes shows like this to go off the air would be a good thing. I can't stand all of these made up stupid shows.

2105 days ago
7.

Lucy    

the whole behind the scenes will definitely influence the voters and not in a good way

2105 days ago
8.

justmy.02    

they did this for the 1st season of Idol (the behind the scenes stuff not the 4th judge)...i'm guessing none of you actually watched it from the beginning. it added more personality to the show. i don't watch it anymore but whatever.

2105 days ago
9.

Me    

#8. You guessed wrong. I've watched it every year, back to the days of Brian Dunkleman.

Regarding the changes, if I wanted to watch Big Brother or any of the other horrendous reality shows on the air, I'd watch them. If I want to see singing, I watch American Idol

Ne'er the twain shall meet.

2105 days ago
10.

I don't believe in sky genies    

The packages that they have run for the contestants the last few seasons seem to have been scripted by publicists. If they can cut together real unscripted drama and personality it is a good thing. I hope they show more aspirational and real delusional people in the auditions this time. The fake bad singing performance artist acts they have been featuring in the last few season suck.

2105 days ago
11.

John    

"Idol Gives Back" isn't happening because the American people are broke and losing their homes. There is no money to give back.

Canada on the other hand... we're doing just fine. :)

2105 days ago
12.

Kevin    

Hollywood.....they can re-invent any crappiness just about anywhere.

2105 days ago
13.

wasted days and wasted nights    

I agree with you Number Two; why no Bettie Page tribute, TMZ? And about the changes to Idol, they may as well fire up the motorcycle now for that leap over the shark.

2105 days ago
14.

SuzyQ    

What if there is a tie. 2 for yes and 2 for no

2105 days ago
15.

Bobby D.    

Nobody cares about the staged nonsense these fake good kids will do. It might be interesting if they came from reform school.

2105 days ago
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