Third Season of 'American Idol' Premieres on Fox

Auditions were held in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Houston, Atlanta, and Honolulu.

The early part of the season became well-known for the introduction of William Hung, a University of California, Berkeley student, who became popular following his rendition of Ricky Martin's "She Bangs". His performance as well as his attitude facing judge Simon Cowell's criticisms (which was a stark contrast to other contestants' confrontational, angry reactions) made him instantly popular, and landed him a record deal with Koch Records.

During the audition round in Houston, Texas, auditioner Jonathan Rey threw a cup of water at Simon, who moments earlier commented that he was terrible and "there's not a song in the world you could sing." Security quickly escorted Jonathan out, and Houston police questioned him, but released him after Simon decided against pressing assault charges on him. The entire incident was caught on tape and was broadcast.

Hollywood rounds contestant Taryn Southern later appeared on the Project My World series and wrote and performed the 2007 "Hott4Hill" viral video.