Pop Idol could make a shock comeback for 20th anniversary special

Pop Idol logo
(Image credit: ITV)

Pop Idol might be returning to ITV next year, as the broadcaster is reportedly "in talks" to develop a 2023 series of the singing competition.

The original series ran between 2001 to 2003 and was hosted by duo Ant and Dec, but we haven't seen a rebooted version of the format. However, that could all change if recent news is anything to go by.

According to TV Zone UK, ITV "expressed interest in the format before Christmas and entered fresh talks earlier this week with execs from America, Holland and Sweden — including original creator Simon Fuller."

They add that the broadcaster is interested in rebooting the series for a special season in Autumn 2023 to mark 20 years since it was last seen on UK TV.

The original Pop Idol series was judged by Neil Fox, Nicki Chapman, Pete Waterman and Simon Cowell. A total of 46 episodes were broadcast during its run where we saw two winners crowned.

Will Young was the winner of season 1 and went on to release a number of studio albums including From Now On, Friday's Child and Let It Go. He is still performing today and has a dedicated fan base.

Meanwhile, season 2 winner Michelle McManus went on to have a successful career as a singer, columnist, and television presenter, known for songs such as All This Time and Emotional.

Will Young

Will Young was the first ever Pop Idol winner. (Image credit: Getty Images)

With this in mind, ITV could be on the lookout for the next pop superstar to commemorate the series' anniversary, although they have not yet publicly commented on this.

The original Pop Idol spawned a number of international versions including American Idol, Australian Idol, Canadian Idol and Indonesian Idol, so the format has been much loved around the world.

Meanwhile, the popular singing competition The Voice UK will return to ITV later this year although an exact release date is not yet known. 

In a statement confirming the news, Katie Rawcliffe, Head of Entertainment Commissioning at ITV said: "We can't wait to bring audiences all the warmth and heart that The Voice has to offer."

Lucy Buglass
Senior Staff Writer

Lucy joined the WhatToWatch.com team in 2021, where she writes series guides for must-watch programmes, reviews and the latest TV news. Originally from Northumberland, she graduated from Oxford Brookes University with a degree in Film Studies and moved to London to begin a career writing about entertainment.

She is a Rotten Tomatoes approved film critic and has a huge passion for cinema. She especially loves horror, thriller and anything crime-related. Her favourite TV programmes include Inside No 9, American Horror Story, Stranger Things and Black Mirror but she is also partial to a quiz show or a bit of Say Yes to the Dress