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) -- Fox has moved American Idol to Wednesday and Thursday nights in an effort to gain more viewership in the show's tenth season.

American Idol is one of the most successful television shows in history and the only program to claim the top Nielsen rating for six consecutive seasons. Management likely hopes to bolster its weak Thursday nights by shifting the program further into the week.

>>'American Idol' Judges: Search Comes to an End

Fox has chosen to keep


in the Tuesday night slot as the lead-in for new comedies

Raising Hope


Mixed Signals



typically brings in strong ratings for Fox and has ranked in Nielsen's top 20 list several times this season.

When the singing contest returns in January, the performance show will be on Wednesdays, followed by the results show on Thursdays.

The show's viewership dropped 16% in season 9 from season 8 and last year its finale delivered its weakest numbers ever for a season-ending show.

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When Simon Cowell, Ellen DeGeneres and Kara DioGuardi announced that they would not be returning for the 10th season, Fox and parent company

News Corporation


launched a search for a new panel of judges.

After a long summer of rumors and speculation, Fox named

Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler

the new judges.

Fox hopes that two new celebrity judges and a fresh cast of fame-seeking singers will help Idol bring in higher Thursday night ratings.

The show will premiere on Wednesday, Jan. 19 at 8 P.M. ET.

-- Written by Theresa McCabe in Boston.

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