Bobby Bones revealed on his Instagram stories on Thursday, December 30 that he will not be returning as a mentor on Season 20 of American Idol. Bones announced the news during a question and answer session with fans after a fan asked about his lengthy trip to Costa Rica with his wife Caitlin. Bones documented the roughly month-long trip on his social media accounts, and while he has announced that the trip was for a new television series, he hasn’t shared details about the project. He did, however, reveal that the new series will not allow him to appear on American Idol.
“As soon as I can say. I will,” Bones wrote on his story in response to the question. “The network hasn’t even announced the show yet. So I’m going to chill for a bit. But it’s a really good show.”
Bones went on, explaining that the new show will preclude him from taking on his usual role as a mentor on American Idol.
“And some of you noticed. I’m not in the Idol promos this season,” he added. “My contract w my new network won’t let me do another show right now. Love Idol, btw. Was a great 4 years.”
Bones first appeared on the singing competition show as a guest mentor on Season 16 in 2018. He then became a full-time mentor for Season 17 and he has served as a guest host in place of Ryan Seacrest on occasion. The show’s new season is set to premiere on February 27 and will feature veteran judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Ritchie along with Seacrest returning as host.
Bones’ diverse television résumé also includes appearances on Dancing with the Stars, Running Wild with Bear Grylls and Topgolf’s Who Will Rock You. In 2021, Bones debuted his own show, Breaking Bobby Bones, on the National Geographic Channel. The radio and TV personality was also tapped to host CBS’ New Years Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash with Entertainment Tonight’s Rachel Smith on New Year’s Eve 2021, December 31.