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Trish Kinane to Step Down as ‘American Idol’ Showrunner

Megan Michaels Wolflick will replace her

Trish Kinane is stepping down as “American Idol” showrunner and president of entertainment programming at Fremantle. Megan Michaels Wolflick will replace her as lead “Idol” producer.

Kinane (pictured above, top left) will continue on with “American Idol” as an executive producer and consultant, Fremantle said on Thursday.

“Trish’s leadership, endless creativity and contributions to Fremantle over the past decade are immeasurable,” Jennifer Mullin, global CEO for Fremantle, said on Thursday. “She has an inspiring hunger to innovate, and I am delighted that she will stay on with us in her new role. I am equally pleased to welcome Megan to hers.”

“I am happy to have been instrumental in the continued success of ‘America’s Got Talent’ and to have refreshed the ‘American Idol’ format, shepherding it through its last years on Fox to its new home, and its recent commission for a 5th season, on ABC,” Kinane said in a statement. “I am leaving the show in good hands with an incredible team, and I am excited to be continuing as executive producer, whilst able to pursue some personal adventures.” 

“American Idol,” which was created by Simon Fuller, aired on Fox for 14 seasons, from 2002 to 2016. ABC revived the singing competition in 2018. Kelly Clarkson famously won the first season of “Idol.”

Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie have been the judges on all of the ABC seasons. Sunday’s Season 19 showdown between finalists Grace Kinstler, Willie Spence and Chayce Beckham starts at 8/7c on ABC.

Beyond Clarkson, the “Idol” winners are: Ruben Studdard (2003), Fantasia Barrino (2004), Carrie Underwood (2005), Taylor Hicks (2006), Jordin Sparks (2007), David Cook (2008), Kris Allen (2009), Lee DeWyze (2010), Scotty McCreery (2011), Phillip Phillips (2012), Candice Glover (2013), Caleb Johnson (2014), Nick Fradiani (2015), Trent Harmon (2016), Maddie Poppe (2018), Laine Hardy (2019) and Just Sam (2020).

Not a ton of stars in that group, but more than “The Voice.”

Non-winning “American Idol” alums include Clay Aiken, Chris Daughtry, Kellie Pickler, Jennifer Hudson and Adam Lambert.