“The Masked Singer” is officially back in business.
Production has begun in Los Angeles on season 4 of the Fox show, which sources say is taking all the usual COVID-19 production precautions, including social distancing and regular temperature checks.
The unscripted sensation is scheduled to take its regular Wednesday night slot in Fox’s fall schedule, with the same judging lineup of Ken Jeong, Nicole Scherzinger, Robin Thicke and Jenny McCarthy all returning.
However, one significant change is being made to the show’s format this season. For the first time in its run, viewers will have the opportunity to vote on their favorite performances. So called “Super Fans” will be selected to become part of a “Virtual Audience,” meaning they can watch each performance from home and cast their vote as to which costumed singer they would like to see again.
The votes will be tallied virtually, and will be taken into account alongside the judges’ decisions when determining the outcome of the competition, a source close to the show says.
Just under a month ago, Fox released the first teaser for the upcoming fourth season. The teaser didn’t offer too many clues, but there are a few scattered around the screen for viewers to find.
While it always seemed certain that the judges would all return, one person whose participation seemed less than certain was host Nick Cannon, who came under significant fire for anti-Semitic comments he made on his podcast back in mid-July. While ViacomCBS terminated its long-term relationship with Cannon as a result, Fox stood by him and decided to keep him on as “Masked Singer” host.
Somewhat conspicuously, Cannon did not physically appear in the teaser; only his voice could be heard.
Deadline first reported the production resumption.