FOX BROADCASTING COMPANY, 19 ENTERTAINMENT AND FREMANTLEMEDIA ANNOUNCE SPONSORS FOR FIFTH SEASON OF "AMERICAN IDOL"
Ford Motor Company, Coca-Cola and Cingular Wireless Return as Official Sponsors of Television's No. 1 Show
Fox Broadcasting Company (FOX), 19 Entertainment and FremantleMedia today announced the sponsors for the fifth season of AMERICAN IDOL, which returns Tuesday, Jan. 17 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) and Wednesday, Jan. 18 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. Last season, American Idol-Tuesday and American Idol-Wednesday ranked as the No. 1 and No. 2 rated programs of the season (out of 200 regular series on the 6-nets) among Adults 18-49, Adults 18-34 and Teens, and did so for 19 consecutive weeks.
FOX, 19 Entertainment and FremantleMedia Licensing Worldwide have re-teamed with Ford Motor Company, Coca-Cola and Cingular Wireless as official sponsors of this year's AMERICAN IDOL.
Season five of AMERICAN IDOL marks the return of the Ford Motor Company as a major sponsor. Ford has been a leading supporter of AMERICAN IDOL since the show's debut in 2002 and will continue to have a strong presence in the fifth season. Ford vehicles will again be featured during the "Idol" action, as contestants will be seen driving and riding in a variety of the automaker's cars, trucks and SUVs. AMERICAN IDOL will serve as the key platform to integrate a variety of Ford vehicles, including the new Ford Fusion, Escape and Mustang. Ford will also give the winner of AMERICAN IDOL, as well as the runner-up, keys to a new Ford Fusion. Ford is the Official Automotive Sponsor.
During the broadcast, AMERICAN IDOL contestants will once again hang out in the popular Red Room, which will feature an updated look for 2006. In addition to exclusive weekly Coca-Cola interstitials, a variety of Coca-Cola advertising will air during commercial breaks, including new spots that will debut in March and a commercial created especially for use on AMERICAN IDOL. Other activities designed to extend the AMERICAN IDOL experience for consumers will be featured in a variety of retail outlets where Coca-Cola is available.
As AMERICAN IDOL's Official Telecom Sponsor, Cingular Wireless is back once again to showcase interactive text messaging through a variety of fun activities that keep IDOL fans wirelessly connected to their favorite contestants. This season, Cingular will feature the suite of Samsung phones including the new Push to Talk phone, the D357, as well
as the perfect text voting phone, the D307. In addition to using their wireless phone of choice to text message their vote each week, Cingular customers can also enjoy Idol Trivia, Idol Fan Club and Idol Chat, not to mention interactive games, downloading ringtones and more. Cingular also will be launching an IDOL-themed sweepstakes later in the season. Stay tuned for more details!
Fourteen-time Emmy-nominated AMERICAN IDOL is created and executive-produced by Simon Fuller, founder of 19 Entertainment, Ltd.; and executive-produced by Cecile Frot-Coutaz, CEO, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.; Nigel Lythgoe, President, 19 Television; and Ken Warwick, Executive Producer, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.
About FremantleMedia Licensing Worldwide, Americas
FremantleMedia Licensing Worldwide, Americas (FLW, Americas) is the licensing arm of FremantleMedia for North and South America. FremantleMedia one of the largest international creators and producers of program brands in the world, with leading prime time drama, serial drama, entertainment and factual entertainment programming in over 40 territories. FLW, Americas exploits FremantleMedia's many strong brands, including the award winning, American Idol, the world's longest running gameshow The Price Is Right, the ever-popular Family Feud, and other classic gameshows, across multiple off-screen platforms including merchandising campaigns, live events, sponsorship, interactive and wireless support, home entertainment and music publishing.
About 19 Entertainment
19 Entertainment, Ltd., a wholly-owned subsidiary of CKX, Inc. (NASDAQ: CKXE), was founded by Simon Fuller 21 years ago and acquired by CKX in March 2005. The company is recognized as a leading creator, provider and promoter of globally successful, music-based entertainment, or "Entertainment Brands."
Simon Fuller, who serves as Chief Executive Officer of 19 Entertainment, is the creator of AMERICAN IDOL in the United States, "Pop Idol" in the UK, as well as versions of the IDOL format in more than 30 countries around the world. Fuller is also the co-creator of SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE, which aired in the U.S. on FOX during summer 2005 and was the top-rated television show in its time slot.
Fuller has made music history in the UK and the U.S.A., producing a stream of No. 1 hits and managing multi-platinum-selling acts. Fuller recently became the world's most successful manager � breaking a record set by the Beatles' manager Brian Epstein in the 1960s � when three of his artists occupied the No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 positions on the U.S. single chart as well as the No. 1 position on the album chart.
19 Entertainment has been involved in the creation of 109 No. 1 singles and 87 No. 1 albums in the UK alone, with an impressive tally of 296 Top-40 albums and 465 Top-40 singles.
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, MI, manufactures and distributes automobiles in 200 markets across six continents. With more than 327,000 employees and 110 plants worldwide, the company's core and affiliated automotive brands include Aston Martin, Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lincoln, Mazda, Mercury and Volvo. Its automotive-related services include Ford Motor Credit Company and Hertz. For more information regarding Ford's products, please visit www.fordvehicles.com.
The Coca-Cola Company is the world's largest beverage company. Along with Coca-Cola, recognized as the world's most valuable brand, the Company markets four of the world's top five soft drink brands, including Diet Coke, Fanta and Sprite, and a wide range of other beverages, including diet and light soft drinks, waters, juices and juice drinks, teas, coffees and sports drinks. Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy the Company's beverages at a rate exceeding 1 billion servings each day. For more information about The Coca-Cola Company, please visit our website at www.coca-cola.com.
About Cingular Wireless
Cingular Wireless is the largest wireless carrier in the United States, serving 52.3 million customers. Cingular, a joint venture between AT&T Inc., formerly SBC Communications Inc., (NYSE: T) and BellSouth Corporation (NYSE: BLS), has the largest digital voice and data network in the nation -- the ALLOVER (SM) network -- and the largest mobile-to-mobile community of any national wireless carrier. Cingular is the only U.S. wireless carrier to offer Rollover (SM), the wireless plan that lets customers keep their unused monthly minutes. Details of the company are available at http://www.cingular.com. Get Cingular Wireless press releases e-mailed to you automatically. Sign up at http://www.cingular.com/newsroom.