Bye Bye, Judges Houses & Boot Camp Remember how last season, everyone was like “How cool that those kids get to go to Britney Spears’s house!!” during Judges’ Houses week, and then it totally wasn’t even her house? Cuz we do, and that was awesome. Well, this year, it won’t even be an issue, because they’re cutting the Judges’ Houses week. Why? Because why not, that was ridiculous.
Also on the chopping block? The Boot Camp weeks, which is a shame, since that’s where we met some of last year’s most spirited contestants.
New Middle (G)Round Showrunners promise a new middle round, one that will make the show’s flow more fluid. Although details aren’t being released, executive producers say the round will “involve all four mentors whittling down the field until each one has four contestants per category.”
Age Ain’t Nothing But A... As for the categories, last year’s are (mostly) history, as the show will return to the Boys, Girls, Groups, and Over 25s format of previous seasons of the show. In Season 2, the categories were split up by age, other than the Groups.
Less Cowbell We love costumes and spangly things as much as the next person, but when Jennel Garcia went from understated sexiness to in-your-face leather and fringe overnight, it was too much. This year, they’re going to take their time with the makeovers and over-producing contestants. “This way the contestants’ journey to being — and looking like — a superstar will happen slowly over the weeks now,” Executive Producer Rob Wade says of their new look and feel.
Money, Money, Monaaaay Probably the bummer-est move of the season, the show will no longer be giving away an insane amount of money. Rather than the 5 million dollar prize of a record contract, a music video, and all the Cheetos they could want (we made that part up), they’ll get a little less.
Simon remarked that the previous prize was “almost too much.” But fear not, the winner will still be handsomely rewarded “$1 million, still get a recording contract with Sony and become a number one priority.” We’re not sure about the wording on that last part, but we trust it’ll all work out just fine.