In an American Idol twist, the judges were the last ones to know which season 12 finalists made it into the top 10, and after the show they talked to The Hollywood Reporter about how strange that was. "We didn’t know what was happening," confesses Randy Jackson. "We had no visual, no anything." Fellow judge Keith Urban adds, "They just said we’re going to comment on the next person," but the judges didn’t know who the next person was until they stepped out on stage.
Keith reveals to THR that he thought Nick Boddington might have made it through to the top 10, as well as Elijah Liu, Breanna Steer and Aubrey Cleland. "There’s a few who did a really stellar job in Las Vegas," says Urban. Randy adds: "America got it right. I think they picked the right top 10."
The first person to know who was going into the top 10 was host Ryan Seacrest, who was going back and forth from the stage to a small room backstage where the top 20 was sequestered, first the boys and then the girls. "That room was hot, without any air conditioning," Ryan says. And how were the finalists? No surprise: "They were really nervous."