Respect the rules. Follow the rules. Kenedi AndersonDecent to leave American Idol of her own volition, many contestants don’t have a choice — they’re kicked off after violating one of the show’s many strict rules.
In addition to all of the contracts and agreements required to take part in the show, whoever comes out on top has to sign a record contract with the show’s label of choice and continue to work with production company 19 Entertainment, which used to produce the reality competition. The contracts are negotiated prior to the finale — which sometimes leaves winners stuck in a deal that they find “manipulative” and overbearing.
“I am very grateful for the opportunities provided to me through appearing on American Idol,” season 11 winner Phillip PhillipsIn January 2015, a legal petition was filed to the California Labour Commissioner. “The value that the fans and the show have given to my career is not lost on me. However, I have never felt like I was free to lead my career in the way that I prefer. I look forward to being able to make my own choices about my career and to being able to make great music and play it for my fans.”
The Georgia native claimed in his filing that he performed multiple concerts for no compensation and that he had very limited creative control over his music. In one instance, Phillips alleged that the production and management company hired a producer that “compromised his interests” when he recorded his first two albums and in another, he claimed that they withheld the title of his 2014 album, Behind the LightHe is the one who sent it.
Phillips’ legal dispute with the company was settled privately in June 2017 after 19 Entertainment filed for bankruptcy. (The corporation has ceased to be involved in producing American Idol.) But the “Home” singer’s negative experiences with his post-show deal hasn’t dissuaded others from signing up to take part in the reality competition — and agreeing to the show’s many rules.
While some of the regulations — such as being an American citizen between the ages of 15 and 29 — are relatively innocuous, other rules are much more restrictive. Every Thursday, contestants “get a CD with snippets of 50 to 200 songs that fit in the category” of that week’s theme, the Washington Post2017: Reports. From there, contestants only have one hour to choose the song that will determine whether or not they’ll stay in the competition for another week. “The reason for this is simply copyright issues,” the official American Idol website explains. “The songs as performed by the contestants are released as singles and made available for downloading.”
Continue scrolling to learn more about the other rules American IdolThe following rules must be followed by contestants during the competition