Fox has made an interesting choice to run its beleagured "American Idol" as it struggles to reverse a remorseless ratings decline in the wake of a mostly buzz-less 12th season: the man who ran Swedish "Idol."
Per Blankens has just been named to what may be the most important production gig in television at the moment, and certainly not the least stress-free. Here are the comments via Fox:
As you may be aware, Nigel Lythgoe, now former EP, is gone, and offered a long statement about his exit early Monday afternoon.
“Per is a creative and experienced executive who has been the show runner on the blockbuster Swedish Idol for more than 5 seasons,” said Trish Kinane, "AI" executive producer for FremantleMedia North America. “He is extremely passionate about Idol and I'm very excited about his ideas and vision for keeping Idol creatively vibrant. He brings the talent and energy needed to keep American Idol strong.”
And per Blankens: "The Idol franchise is a worldwide phenomenon and I'm honored to be a part of the most popular of the franchises, American Idol. I can't wait to get started as auditions for the new season are just a few weeks away.”