In the first season the show was co-hosted by Ryan Seacrest and Brian Dunkleman. Kelly Clarkson won, with Justin Guarini coming in second. A television special from Las Vegas starring the top thirty-two finalists aired after the show, a forty city tour with the top ten followed, as did the box office bomb titled From Justin to Kelly. Since winning, Clarkson has gone on to a successful recording career, including multiple-platinum albums, a number of Top 10 hit singles and on to win 2 Grammy awards.
Christina Christian was not present during the night of her elimination after being hospitalized from exhaustion. Her elimination was shocking to many, especially Simon Cowell. Some people think that she forfeited the competition because of her hospitalization. One rumor said that she earlier committed unacceptable behavior during the finals so some people say that the show gave fake results.
Jim Verraros, the first and so far only openly gay finalist was told to remove all gay comments from the show. This, of course, caused much controversy.
In November 2006, RJ Helton admitted that he was gay, making him the third openly gay finalist (Second being Anwar Robinson).
There is a rumor that semi-finalist Adriel Herrera was invited to perform at the wild card show but turned down the offer for no apparent reason.