American Idol may have come to a close after 15 seasons on Thursday night, but is it really over for good?
During the singing competition show's epic series finale, we found a myriad of clues that led us to believe the popular Fox show may be making a comeback in the future after all. From Ryan Seacrest's mysterious sign-off to Harry Connick Jr.'s coy remarks, we're not completely sold on the idea that Idol is permanently passing the torch.
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So, could an Idol comeback actually be true? ET's breaking down all the signs that point to yes!
1. Ryan Seacrest's grand finale speech.
In case you missed it, longtime host Ryan Seacrest wrapped up the show with a heartfelt farewell speech, which leads us to our first clue.
"We have had some incredible talent on this show," he began. "Whether it's the stars we created, or the judges behind the desk, the real reason that our lives have changed forever is you at home -- we know that, we appreciate that, and one more time -- this is so tough, we say to you from Hollywood, goodnight America."
But after a very long, drawn-out (and dramatic!) pause, he exclaimed, "For now."
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2. Simon Fuller's "next generation" remarks.
During Tuesday's Idol special, Fuller -- the series' creator/executive producer -- reflected on some of his favorite moments from the show over the years, but something he said in regard to an Idol resurrection immediately caught our attention.
"One of the few things I find exciting about this chapter coming to an end is there's a new chapter to begin," he explained. "I do believe this is an opportunity to do things differently and see what a revamped, next generation American Idol might look like."
Executive producer Cecile Frot-Coutaz echoed his statement, saying, "About a year ago, we had a really honest discussion with the network. They were very much on-board for having it come back, but we have to make it in a way that's a lot more cost-effective."
But that's not all! Wylleen May, executive in charge of production, seemed equally as confident about an Idol reboot.
"It's such an amazing format," she dished. "I think that some way, in some different incarnation, it'll be back."
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3. Harry Connick Jr. says an Idol return "seems obvious."
ET's Sophie Schillaci was backstage during both nights of the two-part series finale, where she caught up with the Idol judge.
"You said that you wouldn't be surprised if Idol lived on another network," she stated. "You know anything about that? Would you return to it if it went somewhere else?"
Connick's answer was very interesting.
"I honestly don't know," he said. "But it seems obvious, right? That it's such a huge show, it's one of the biggest shows on television. I would imagine, if I were a network company president, I would want it on my network."
"I've had a great time," he continued. "Who knows what'll happen in the future, but it's been great so far."
So far? Talk about a tease!
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4. Seacrest wasn't completely ready to say goodbye.
ET also caught up with Seacrest backstage, where he gushed over his "love" for his job as host -- and admitted that he definitely wants it back if the show does make a comeback!
"It is hard for me to believe it could be gone forever, but they are saying farewell [tonight]," he said. "I love this show. To me, it's part of my life, so if it lives on, I would love to be one of the people that lives with it."
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5. Fuller's promise to Idol fans.
Last but definitely not least, Fuller shared his excitement over the incarnation of the series in an interview published earlier this week.
"There will no doubt be another format or refinement or elevation of the format," he told The Hollywood Reporter. "Now I can actually revamp it and come up with a new version. And we can look back on 15 seasons and think of some legitimate ways to allow people to enjoy them again, maybe adding another dimension to it."
"There are loads of ideas being shared and I'm deep in thought about how we can evolve Idol," Fuller continued. "We debuted at the very beginning of the digital world. So the next generation of Idol will be a lot more interactive, a lot more immersive."
"My head is exploding with opportunities," he concluded. "The next generation of Idol -- and Idol will certainly be coming back for sure -- will have a youthful glow and it will be pioneering again, just as it was when we first began."
Well, there you have it, Idol fans!
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