The Ultimate Guide to Christmas Specials

Christmas TV specials, limited series and movies are bigger than ever these days from now until the New Year, you’ll be able to find some festive yule-tide programming every night of the week. From the traditional viewing of It’s a Wonderful Life, the different versions of How the Grinch Stole Christmas, to baking shows and live music specials, we’ve got them all listed on the new Christmas TV Specials page. (Since not all of the networks list their specials early, this list will be updated throughout the coming weeks, so check back often for new additions!)

It’s Official … ‘American Idol’ is Coming Back


American Idol has only been off the airwaves for about a year and many thought that the show could be revived in a few years, but today, ABC has officially announced that the former hit FOX show would be coming to the alphabet network for the 2017-2018 TV season. While diehard fans will no doubt be thrilled with this news, others will have more of a “How can we miss you if you won’t go away” attitude about the show.

Is it too soon to bring back the show? The president of Disney/ABC doesn’t think so. “American Idol on ABC...that has a nice ring to it,” said Ben Sherwood, co-chairman, Disney Media Networks and president, Disney|ABC. “Idol is an entertainment icon, and now it will air where it belongs, in ABC’s lineup of addictive fan favorites alongside Dancing with the Stars and The Bachelor. America, get ready for the return of a bigger, bolder and better-than-ever Idol.”

Channing Dungey, president of ABC Entertainment agrees. “American Idol is a pop-culture staple that left the air too soon,” said Dungey. “ABC is the right home to reignite the fan base. We are thrilled viewers will once again share in these inspiring stories of people realizing their dreams.”

Now that the show has been confirmed, the host and judges for the new show haven’t, but it is speculated that Ryan Seacrest would again host the new Idol since he was just brought on to serve as permanent co-host of the ABC show, Live with Kelly.

When American Idol debuted in the U.S., the series revolutionized television, pioneering the reality-competition genre and holding an unmatched record for being the highest-rated series for nearly a decade. The series also ushered in second-screen audience participation, being the first to introduce text-based and mobile voting. The Idol format has taken on original versions in 55 countries around the world, and American Idol itself has played to a worldwide audience of over 460 million across 53 countries.

To date, American Idol has earned 67 Emmy nominations and nine wins, including the prestigious Governors Award in 2016, and its talented discoveries have already won 14 Grammys, two Golden Globes and an Academy Award, among numerous other accolades.

American Idol help launch the careers of Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Katharine McPhee, Adam Lambert, Chris Daughtry, Kris Allen, Mandisa and many others. American Idol contestants have sold more than 60 million albums, resulting in more than 80 Platinum records and 95 Gold records. Its participants have generated more than 450 Billboard No. 1 hits and sold more than 260 million digital downloads.

And here’s a fact that many are unaware of. American Idol has already been a part of the Disney|ABC family, with “The American Idol Experience” taking residence at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park for five years. The live production featured park guests auditioning for Disney cast members and then performing in front of a live audience. The winner then received a “Dream Ticket” that granted them front-of-the-line privileges at future American Idol auditions. Five Disney Dream Ticket contestants made it to the Top 24 in one season alone.

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