The eleventh season of American Idol premiered on Fox on January 18, 2012. The show aired on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 8/7c. Ryan Seacrest returned as host, while Randy Jackson, Steven Tyler, and Jennifer Lopez all returned as judges. Interscope Records Chairman Jimmy Iovine, a songwriter and producer, also returned as an in-house mentor to work with the contestants on a weekly basis. This season followed the same format as season 10, although a new title screen and logo were created, with a different font. Tyler and Lopez announced that they would be leaving the show two months after the finale. Though Lopez later returned as a judge for the show's thirteenth season.
The season set a record when 132 million votes were gathered for the finale. On May 23, 2012, Phillip Phillips became the winner of the eleventh season of American Idol, beating Jessica Sanchez, the first female recipient of the judges' save.
Eight contestants from this season were signed to record labels. The signed artists are Phillip Phillips, Jessica Sanchez, Hollie Cavanagh, Elise Testone, Colton Dixon, DeAndre Brackensick, Heejun Han, Erika Van Pelt and Jeremy Rosado.
Skylar Laine signed to 19 Entertainment's management and was in the process of finding a label, but she later parted ways with them.