While it may not be one of the most-talked-about stories over the past few months, the departure of Fox’s Mike Darnell is one of the most significant moves in the reality TV industry in the past few years. This is a man who was really responsible for revolutionizing many genres of reality TV, and he brought to us the modern-day singing competition with “American Idol.”
So how do you replace a man like him? The basic answer is that you really do not try to do everything all at once. Recognizing that appointing one person to do everything that he had overseen at the network would be a critical error, so Fox decided instead to appoint a News Corp. veteran in David Hill to specifically oversee both “American Idol” and “The X Factor.” This is a man who has worked around the globe, negotiated with big agencies like the NFL and major-league baseball, and also knows how to revolutionize broadcasts to give viewers an good experience.
When it comes to singing competitions, Hill brings a unique perspective in that he’s not someone who directly worked much on either of the aforementioned shows before, but he knows Fox and the industry well. Therefore, he may have some fresh ideas, and is going to have an opportunity to hire some new talent for the shows and also determine in part who will be the right “American Idol” producers moving forward. (Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick reportedly will not return.)
Sadly, it’s going to be a while before we see the real fruits of Hill’s labor. “The X Factor” is already hard at work for the year, and “American Idol” will really be the first show that really sees his oversight more than the other.
Do you think that both shows need a massive overhaul? If you want to check out some more “American Idol” news, you can do so over here.