We've Got Hollywood Covered

How Ryan Seacrest Can Juggle Hosting ‘American Idol’ in LA and ‘Live’ in NYC

Dude’s busy schedule will likely dictate midseason singing competition’s time slot

In a move that should be shocking to absolutely no one, ABC named Ryan Seacrest its “American Idol” host on Thursday.

Seacrest’s busy schedule doesn’t exactly offer a lot of flexibility — especially when you consider that “Idol” tapes in Los Angeles and his new gig as co-host of “Live With Kelly and Ryan” is Monday-Friday in New York City. And then there is his daily syndicated radio show, “On Air With Ryan Seacrest.”

How is Seacrest going to possibly balance all of that? (Thank goodness “Knock Knock Live” didn’t make it to season 2.)

Well, for starters, ABC built Seacrest an on-site Manhattan radio studio just for “On Air.” Problem 1: solved. There are plenty more where that came from, however.

As anyone who followed Fox’s “American Idol” knows, one of Ryan’s main jobs is as the guy who celebrates a trying-out talent’s golden ticket moment when they’re welcomed to Hollywood.

For those geographically challenged, Hollywood — Seacrest’s old stomping grounds — is very far from New York City. Even flying privately that trip takes six hours in the air. It’s extremely unlikely that “American Idol” will move to New York for its host, so how could this guy even pull it off?

The predominant theory seems to be that the new-look “Idol” would involve one live episode per week, and probably on a Sunday evening when the show returns early in 2018. Seacrest would then be able to take a red eye back East for “Live” and his radio show on Monday morning. In theory, he could also pull “Idol” off on a Friday, though that’s cutting it much closer and it feels unlikely that ABC would banish its big splash to the worst weeknight for television.

If Ripa was willing to pre-tape every Friday show — which they do from time to time — the same argument could be made for scheduling the new “Idol” on Thursday nights.

Officially, the network is mum on what night “Idol” will air. “We have no further information than what it is in the press release,” an ABC rep told TheWrap this morning after its big announcement. “Scheduling will be announced at a later time.”

If the Sunday plan is truly in the cards, we can give readers a fairly accurate idea of the “Dick Clark’s New Years Rockin’ Eve” host’s schedule, simply by basing it on what he used to do for Fox.

Kicking off the season, Fox’s “American Idol” would film its Audition Round in seven cities — ABC has announced that tryouts will begin August 17, which is a bit later than Fox used to start the process.

Fox mostly shot auditions on weekends to accommodate Ryan’s popular radio show. When he had to stay out of L.A. for a while, he was usually able to find a local radio station from which to work.

The always punctual Seacrest would typically get to the auditions at 8 a.m. local time to film the opening scene — you know, the helicopter shot with all the excitable and starry-eyed locals. That setup took about an hour, a person familiar with the former iteration’s schedule told TheWrap.

Seacrest would then put in a few more hours of on-camera stuff each day, and he always had some press commitments to fulfill as well — especially during the groundbreaking show’s historic heyday.

So, yeah, the dude is busy — and “American Idol” is demanding. But if anyone could pull this off, it’s a workaholic who wakes up at 5 a.m. anyway.