Wednesday, March 9, 2011

American idol ;History,Reception,Revenue and commercial ventures,Informations


Former logo of American Idol from 2002 to 2008.
American Idol was created based on the British show Pop Idol, which was in turn inspired by Popstars, a show TV producer Nigel Lythgoe saw in Australia and brought over to Britain.Using the idea from Popstars of employing a panel of judges to select singers in audition, and adding other elements such as telephone voting by the viewing public, which at the time was already in use in shows such as the Eurovision Song Contest, Simon Fuller then created the show Pop Idol. The show debuted in 2001 in Britain with Nigel Lythgoe as the producer and Simon Cowell as one of the judges, and was a big success with the viewing public.
Simon Fuller and Simon Cowell attempted to sell the Pop Idol format to the U.S in 2001, but the idea was met with poor response from U.S. TV networks.However, Rupert Murdoch, head of Fox's parent company, was persuaded to buy the show by his daughter Elisabeth who was a fan of the British show. The show was renamed American Idol: The Search for a Superstar, debuted in the summer of 2002, and became one of the summer hit shows that year.The show, with the personal engagement of the viewers with the contestants through voting, and the presence of the caustic-tongue judge Simon Cowell, grew into a phenomenon. By 2005 it had become the biggest show on U.S. TV, a position it then held on for six straight years.The show is currently scheduled to remain on air until 2011.

Critical reception

Early reviews noted the excessive product placement in the show negatively. Some critics were harsh about what they perceived as its blatant commercial calculations – Karla Peterson of The San Diego Union-Tribune charged that American Idol is "a conniving multimedia monster" that has "absorbed the sin of our debauched culture and spit them out in a lump of reconstituted evil."On its early episodes, Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly considered that "As TV, American Idol is crazily entertaining; as music, it's dust-mote inconsequential".Others however thought that "the most striking aspect of the series was the genuine talent it revealed".Other aspects of the show have attracted criticisms, for example the decision to send the season one winner to sing the national anthem at the Lincoln Memorial on the anniversary of September 11 in 2002 was poorly received by many. Lisa de Moraes of The Washington Post noted with satirical flair that "The terrorists have won" and, with a sideswipe at the show's commercialism and voting process, that the decision as to who "gets to turn this important site into just another cog in the Great American Idol Marketing Mandala is in the hands of the millions of girls who have made "American Idol" a hit. Them and a handful of phone-redialer geeks who have been clocking up to 10,000 calls each week for their contestant of choice (but who, according to Fox, are in absolutely no way skewing the outcome).
Some of the later writers about the show were more positive, Michael Slezak, again of Entertainment Weekly, thought that "for all its bloated, synthetic, product-shilling, money-making trappings, "Idol" provides a once-a-year chance for the average American to combat the evils of today's music business." Others focused on the personalities in the show; Ramin Setoodeh of Newsweek accused judge Simon Cowell's cruel critiques in the show of helping to establish in the wider world a culture of meanness, that "Simon Cowell has dragged the rest of us in the mud with him."
Some in the entertainment industry were critical of the star-making aspect of the show. Usher, a mentor on the show, bemoaning the loss of the 'true art form of music', thought that shows like American Idol made it seem "so easy that everyone can do it, and that it can happen overnight", and that "television is a lie".That American Idol is seen to be a fast track to success for its contestants has been a cause of resentment for some in the industry. LeAnn Rimes, commenting on Carrie Underwood winning Best Female Artist in Country Music Awards over Faith Hill in 2006, said that "Carrie has not paid her dues long enough to fully deserve that award". It is a common theme that has been echoed by many others. Elton John, who had appeared as a mentor in the show but turned down an offer to be a judge on American Idol, commenting on talent shows in general said that "there have been some good acts but the only way to sustain a career is to pay your dues in small clubs", and Steven Tyler, appearing on The Late Show with David Letterman on January 17, 2011 in a publicity drive as a judge for American Idol, said that "I've always thought that to be an American Idol or any kind of idol, you have to pay your dues, but today it's a different world."
American Idol was nominated for Emmy's Outstanding Reality Competition Program for eight years but never won. Director Bruce Gower won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing For A Variety, Music Or Comedy Series in 2009, and the show won two Creative Arts Emmys in 2007 and one in 2008. It won the People's Choice Award, which honors the popular culture of the previous year as voted by the public, for favorite competition/reality show in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2010 and 2011.

Revenue and commercial ventures

The dominance of American Idol in the ratings has made it the most profitable show in U.S. TV for many years. The show was estimated to generate $900 million for the year 2004 through sales of TV ads, albums, merchandise and concert tickets. By season seven, the show was estimated to earn around $900 million from its ad revenue alone, not including ancillary sponsorship deals and other income One estimate puts the total TV revenue for the first eight seasons of American at $6.4 billion. Sponsors that bought fully integrated packages can expect a variety of promotions of their products on the show, such as product placement, adverts and product promotion integrated into the show, and various promotional opportunities. Other off-air promotional partners pay for the rights to feature "Idol" branding on their packaging, products and marketing programs. American Idol also partnered with Disney in its theme park attraction The American Idol Experience.

Advertising revenue

American Idol became the most expensive series on broadcast networks for advertisers starting season four, and by the next season, it had broken the record in advertising rate for a regularly scheduled prime-time network series, selling over $700,000 for a 30-seconds slot,and reaching up to $1.3 million for the finale. Its ad prices reached a peak in season seven at $737,000. Estimated revenue more than doubled from $404 million in season three to $870 million in season six.While that declined from season eight onwards, it still earned significantly more than its nearest competitor,with advertising revenue topping $800 million annually.

Media sponsorship

Ford Motor Company and Coca-Cola were two of the first sponsors of American Idol in its first season. The sponsorship deal cost around $10 million in season one, rising to $35 million by season 7.The third major sponsor AT&T Wireless joined in the second season. iTunes joined in season seven.
American Idol prominent display of its sponsors' logo and products had been noted since the early seasons.By season seven, Idol showed 4,151 product placements in its first 38 episodes, according to Nielsen Media Research. The branded entertainment integration was beneficial for both the show and its advertisers. Promotion of AT&T text-messaging as a means to vote successfully introduced the technology into the wider cultureCoca-Cola has seen its equity increased during the show, and Ford used the show to promote the "think" technology of its cars with a series of adverts featuring the contestants as well as the winner in 2009.
  • Coca-Cola – Cups bearing logo of Coca-Cola, and occasionally its subsidiary Vitaminwater,are featured prominently on the judges table. Contestants are shown between songs held in the "Coca-Cola Red Room," the show's equivalent of the traditional green room. (The Coca-Cola logo however is obscured during rebroadcast in the UK which until 2010 banned product placement.
  • Ford – Contestants appear in the special Ford videos on the results shows, and winners Kelly Clarkson, Taylor Hicks, and Kris Allen have also appeared in commercials for Ford. The final two each won a free Ford Mustang in seasons four, five and six, Ford Escape Hybrid in season seven, Ford Fusion Hybrid in season eight, and Ford Fiesta in season nine. In the red room, there is a glass table with a Ford wheel as its base.
  • AT&T – AT&T Mobility is promoted as the service provider for text-voting. AT&T created an ad campaign that centered on an air-headed teenager going around telling people to vote.
  • Apple iTunes – Ryan Seacrest announces the availability of contestants' performances exclusively via iTunes. Videos are regularly shown of contestants learning their songs by rehearsing with iPods.
  • Previous sponsors include Old Navy and Clairol's Herbal Essences. In seasons two and three, contestants sometimes donned Old Navy clothing for their performances with celebrity stylist Steven Cojocaru assisting with their wardrobe selection,and contestants received Clairol-guided hair makeovers. In the season seven finale, both David Cook and David Archuleta appeared in "Risky Business"-inspired commercials for Guitar Hero, a sponsor of the tour that year.

Music releases

American Idol has traditionally released studio recordings of contestants' performances as well as the winner's coronation single for sale. For the first five seasons, the recordings were released as a compilation album at the end of the season. All five of these albums reached the top ten in Billboard 200 which made then American Idol the most successful soundtrack franchise of any motion picture or television program. Starting season six, individual performances were released during the season as digital downloads, initially from the American Idol official website only. In season seven the live performances and studio recordings were made available during the season in iTunes when it joined as a sponsor.
For the first nine seasons, Sony Music was partnered with American Idol to promote and distribute its music, and had the right of first refusal to sign contestants for three months after the season's finale. In 2010, Sony was replaced by as the music label for American Idol by UMG's Interscope-Geffen-A&M Records.

American Idol tour

The top ten toured at the end of every season. Kellogg's Pop-Tarts was the sponsor for the first seven seasons, and Guitar Hero was added for the season seven tour. M&M's Pretzel Chocolate Candies was announced as the sponsor of the season nine tour.The season five tour was the most successful tour with gross of over $35 million.