Fox is pulling out all of the stops for American Idol’s fast approaching series finale. The show’s very first American Idol, Kelly Clarkson, has pre-tapped her appearance, thanks to the fact that she is set to give birth to her second child. But, she isn’t the only former show favorite that will be making a return to the Idol stage. TMZ has learned exclusively that William Hung, who did a famously bad audition with Ricky Martin’s “She Bangs”, will perform. Also, although the cat is now out of the bag, all three original judges, Randy Jackson, Simon Cowell, and Paula Abdul, are set to be joined by Idol’s former season 1 co-host Brian Dunkleman as a surprise for Ryan Seacrest.
Dunkleman, who famously disagreed with the some of the show’s production tactics when handling and filming contestants, left after only hosting 1 season. He has gone on record about his dislike of Seacrest in the past. Since leaving the show in 2002, Brian and Ryan’s careers have deferred greatly in trajectory. Although Dunkleman later served as host of spinoff shows like Idol Rewind, and the Idol Recap show for Sirius radio, while also making guest appearances on shows like Friends and The Ghost Whisperer, Seacrest has used his position to evolve into a mainstream TV/radio staple for several channels, and serve as a key figure behind media ventures like the Keeping Up With The Kardashians franchise, and the AXIS cable network.
However awkward, this kind of reunion could make for TV gold. The American Idol finale is set to air on the Fox Network this Thursday. We’ll be Watching. Will you?