What Time 'American Idol' 2022 Starts, Who Are the Judges and How To Watch Season 20

American Idol has been off our screens since last May, so it must be time again to search for a new singing star. And so it is: Season 20 is due to start on ABC this month with a new set of auditions.

Auditions have been going on quietly behind the scenes for weeks, so we now know whether the hosts, judges and mentors are returning for another season.

We also know the details of a new twist that will allow some contestants to skip straight past Hollywood Week, which was taped in November.

We also know exactly when episodes are releasing in 2022, and how you can watch them online. And, we also have a rough schedule for the year so you know what part of Idol is happening when.

When Does American Idol Season 20 Start?

american idol 2022
The judges of "American Idol." Season 20 begins in February 2022. ABC

In 2022, the show is kicking off two weeks later than last year. The first auditions episode will air on February 27, 2022. What is not changing, however, is the start time. Episodes are set to air weekly on Sundays at 8 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. CT.

Last year, auditions ran until mid-March, with Hollywood Week airing in March, with the top 16 and then top 12 announced in April. The final, meanwhile aired towards the end of May.

Per GoldDerby, the show has already taped episodes up to its top 24, who this month have been competing with solo performances and celebrity duets in Hawaii. These still have to be whittled down to a top 12, who will compete in the live shows from mid-April.

How to Watch American Idol Season 20

As well as watching on their TV while it airs, cable subscribers are able to watch a live stream on ABC on its website and app by logging in with their TV provider details or log-in to their cable alternative.

As usual, American Idol's streaming home is Hulu, who will be releasing episodes the next day after they air on ABC.

Hulu Plus Live TV subscribers will be able to stream live on the website and app.

Who Are the Judges for American Idol Season 20?

Yet again, there are no changes to the judges' panel, with Lionel Ritchie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan all back for the fifth year. Ryan Seacrest will also be back as host.

One key member of the Idol family, however, will be out for Season 20. Mentor Bobby Bones is out for the season due to contractual obligations to an as-yet-unannounced TV show. Replacing him will be Bebe Rexha and Jimmie Allen.

The 2022 season also offers a tweak to the rules at the three in-person audition sites (in Los Angeles, Austin and Nashville). There, the judges had three "platinum tickets" that allowed their recipients to skip the first day of Hollywood Week.