January 09, 2012 12:00 PM by Ashley Lee
With Ryan Seacrest’s contract set to end after American Idol’s upcoming season, he’s rumored to end up on the East Coast to replace Matt Lauer on the TODAY show. However, the longtime host is now saying differently for the first time, saying he “can’t imagine life without American Idol.” Where will Ryan Seacrest be a year from now, and what does FOX’s president say about his paycheck negotiations?
At the Television Critics Association press tour, Ryan Seacrest professed his allegiance to American Idol by refusing to comment on the potential position with TODAY or even with NBC’s The Voice, since he’s also under contract with NBCUniversal at large as a producer and host for red carpet specials and E! News.
“I love this television show…and I can’t imagine life without American Idol,” said Seacrest. ”I have a deal with NBCUniversal that we’re in negotiations discussing what I’ll do, but I already work there.”
Despite statements made about partnering production companies Fremantle and CKx viewing Seacrest as dispensable, FOX entertainment presidents insist that the network will negotiate to keep Seacrest on Idol.
“As we know, it is a much harder job than meets the eye,” said entertainment president Kevin Reilly. ”I think everyone has come to realize the value of Ryan Seacrest. It’s very hard to imagine [American Idol] without Ryan. We certainly want to keep him.”
Though Seacrest’s last negotiations back in 2009 won him the $15 million per year he’s earning now, Reilly suggested that such this year would be a “tough negotiation” but one that would “come to a conclusion pretty quickly.”
Photo credit: FOX