March 25, 2007 07:43 AM by Joe Blackmon
In addition to making stars out of some of the best singers in America,
American Idol is such a powerful television vehicle that anyone that
becomes involved with the show has the possibility of becoming an
overnight sensation. Back during American Idol 3, William Hung became
popular for having a positive attitude even though he sang badly.
Earlier during this season of American Idol 6, Kenneth Briggs &
Jonathan Jayne found fame because they were nice guys that received
some harsh comments from the judges. Sixty-four year old Sherman Pore
also became a sensation because of a heartwarming story about losing
his lady love to cancer.
However, the latest instant celebrity created by American Idol proves that you don’t even have to audition for the show to become swept up in the media juggernaut that is American Idol. Ashley Ferl was just an audience member when the American Idol cameras found her. She owes her new found fame not to singing at all, but simply to crying while others sang.
Following in the footsteps of David Hasselhoff who cried at the American Idol 5 finale, Ashley Ferl let the water works flow during the most recent American Idol performance show. After Haley Scarnato performed, Ryan Seacrest initially talked to Ashley Ferl after a commercial break. Ashley was only weeping slightly, when Seacrest said “Tears of joy, right. You’re having fun. Good, good to have you with us. Thanks for coming.” However, it was during Sanjaya Malakar’s performance that Ashley really became the focus of attention. The camera flashed to her sobbing several times, and Simon Cowell remarked “I think the little girl’s face says it all.”
Ryan Seacrest then clarified “I actually think she liked him. Yeah, that was good right, you enjoyed that, you’re a fan.” Sanjaya Malakar then went down and gave a very excited Ashley a hug. At the end of the show, Ryan Seacrest also called Ashley up on the stage to meet all the American Idol finalists.
By the next day, newspapers and talk shows were clamoring to get the scoop on the famous American Idol crying girl. Early speculation on message boards suggested that maybe the crying girl was a hired actress or part of some wish granting charitable organization. However, it turns out she was neither. The LA Times discovered that Ashley Ferl had tickets to “Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader?” which included passes to a dress rehearsal for Idol. When Idol producers saw her crying, they evidently realized that it would make for good TV and gave her front and center seats to the final taping.
How long will Ahsley Fern’s new found fame last? Not everyone is able to make a career out of their American Idol fame like William Hung. Often the attention fades away after a couple days of doing the talk show circuit. However, we wouldn’t be surprised if American Idol producers invite Ashley back and feature her again on the American Idol finale.