American Idol 7 returns as usual in January; Hell’s Kitchen 4 will debut in April

FOX’s spring savior, American Idol, will air on Tuesdays and Wednesdays as usual, despite the writers’ strike. The seventh season will debut January 14 at 8 p.m. with a two-hour audition episode, and follow that with a two-hour episode on Wednesday at 8.

American Idol 7 will have hour-long episodes on Wednesdays until March 12, when it moves to 9 p.m. and airs half-hour results shows. The network has not yet announced when or even if the show will expand to three nights a week for the semi-final round.

While Ryan, Simon, Randy, and Paula are staying relatively consistent, Gordon Ramsay is returning to abuse a new group of chefs earlier than expected. Instead of debuting in the summer, Hell’s Kitchen 4 will debut in the spring, on April 1 at 9. That’s a Tuesday, meaning it will follow Idol on Tuesday nights until a winner is crowned.

FOX Announces Revised Lineup for 2007-08 Season [FOX press release]