The end could be in sight for Ryan Seacrest’s run as host of Fox’s “American Idol,” according to a report by the New York Post. But show producer producer Nigel Lythgoe may come to Seacrest’s rescue, according to another media report.
Seacrest is in the final year of a three-year deal, which the Post pegs at $45 million for the three years, the story notes. The story speculates that the current season could be Seacrest’s last with the show.
Meanwhile, TMZ.com reports that Lythgoe has vowed to make up the difference in Seacrest’s salary if it’s cut.
Lythgoe made the vow after reports surfaced that producers may be trying to cut Seacrest’s reported $15 million salary, the TMZ story says. Lythgoe has been telling people that Seacrest is extremely important to "Idol" and he isn’t sure the show would work as well without his hosting abilities, the piece adds.
The Post notes that Seacrest “also has a lucrative hosting/production deal with E! — including the ‘Kardashians’ reality franchise — and has been wooed by NBC as a possible replacement for ‘Today’ co-host Matt Lauer, whose deal expires at the end of this year.”
However, the story adds that Lauer is expected to remain in his NBC job — and says Seacrest is unlikely to leave “Idol.”
Marc Berman, editor-in-chief of TV Media Insights, is quoted in the story saying: “Fox has said they have every intention of doing whatever they can to keep him. They’re not going to let him go.”
Meanwhile, news has just broken that Seacrest is creating his own TV network with Mark Cuban, as TVWeek reported today.