Bobby Bones was mysteriously missing from all American Idol Season 20 promos and while it was all up for speculation, fans finally got word about what’s up. As it turns out, the mentor who has been a part of the show since Season 17 has found himself leaving the mentor seat as his contract with his new network isn’t letting him do another show right now.
The news comes from a now-expired Instagram Story (via TVLine) responding a fan’s comment about why he was in Costa Rica. While this sounds like a weird source to get this confirmation, Bones does sign off the question, which he only really dances around, by mentioning American Idol as “a great four years.”
“And some of you noticed, I’m not in the ‘Idol’ promos this season. My contract [with] my new network won’t let me do another show right now. Love ‘Idol,’ BTW. Was a great 4 years.”
As expected, he’s been pretty tight-lipped about his new project as the network hasn’t even announced the show yet. While he couldn’t do any sort of other TV show, he was able to host CBS New Year’s Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash alongside Entertainment Tonight’s Rachel Smith.
The brand-new milestone season of American Idol, which will still feature host Ryan Seacrest alongside judges Luke Bryan, Lionel Richie, and Katy Perry, is premiering February 27.