Jennifer Lopez's 'American Idol' deal valued at $12 million: Reports

Jennifer-Lopez-Image Credit: Jamie McCarthy/WireImage.comGet ready to call her Jenny from the Fox (Broadcasting Company). Or maybe the $12 Million Woman. Jennifer Lopez will be joining the judges’ panel for the 10th season of the network’s ratings giant, American Idol, in a deal worth $12 million, according to an anonymous source who spoke to (The contract was first reported yesterday by

Lopez has been the subject of intense media scrutiny with regard to a coveted spot on a rebooted Idol panel. Her name first surfaced for the gig in late July, before a number of media outlets counted her out of the running due to alleged “diva” demands. As first reported by on Aug. 12, however, a source close to the show set the record straight that “no deals have fallen apart due to unreasonable demands” and that “This may simply be a case of one diva’s rep slinging mud to make another potential candidate look like a diva.” Soon after, Lopez’s name was back in the mix — along with Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler and original panelist Randy Jackson — as a front-runner for one of the three most coveted chairs in the reality TV universe. The J.Lo.-Tyler-Jackson rumors got a further shot of adrenaline when Fox announced — the Friday night before Labor Day — that judge Kara DioGuardi would not be returning to the show for its 10th season.

Spokespersons from Fox, Fremantle, and 19 Entertainment declined comment for this story; a rep for Lopez did not return calls from EW. According to Deadline, Lopez had sought an overall deal with Fox that would have included guaranteed movie and TV pilot deals, but that portion of the contract did not come to fruition.


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  • Mr. Holloway

    In 2001, she became the first woman to have the #1 album and movie in the country at the same time.

    Now she’s making less money on “American Idol” than Ryan Seacrest. Just a bad scene all around….the show feels like it’s on its last, desperate legs.

    • Vince from NYC

      12 Million for half a year’s work isn’t too bad.. You can’t be at the top forever so why not take a nice payday and be off the rest of the year to spend with her childeren. Also, Idols ratings are rediculous they are not on their last legs yet. If this season tanks without Simon then I’ll agree with you but as of now they are still #1.

      • Stormy


      • main point

        Very true, they need to not allow text voting. It’s not fair.

      • Jersey Jeff

        Erin Lokitz, are expecting their first child early next year

      • Jamie

        Good job Nigel!!! Way to take the focus off the judges and put it back on the contestants. I just can’t think of any better way to accomplish that than to hire J-Lo and Steven Tyler. Sir, you are a complete Moron.

      • BlackIrish4094

        @main point, why is it “not fair” they don’t allow text voting? You have a phone, voting is free, pick up and call. Maybe you would personally prefer to text your vote but an inconvenience for you does not make the situation “unfair”.

      • @Black Irish

        No, they need to limit the calls or texts from any given phone, as DWTS does. Otherwise teens will only put through guys who they think are cute regardless of their talent or lack thereof.

    • steve degnim

      I agree, I feel it is on its last leg, starting to flounder

      • chichi

        starting to flounder? haa haa they should have ended it at season 5.

      • Brad

        Yep. This is AI’s last year.

      • Vince from NYC

        You guy’s are on something. It is such a money making machine with a deep rooted fan base, mostly families. Idol will be around for years to come. It can afford a decent size dip in ratings and still be crazy profitable. Just because you don’t think the quality is still there doesn’t mean America won’t watch. They’ll watch, they’ll vote and they’ll go to the concerts.

      • dallasjack

        Go to concerts??? uh no they wont. They cancelled at least 8 shows this year for slumping ticket sales

      • KLH

        And they balked at loopy Paula’s request for $1 million? J Lo better bring a whole lot of crazy for those $$$$.

      • Amy

        How long is her contract? IF the show stays on, she won’t last 1, maybe 2 seasons more. A.I. is officially DEAD.

      • Bitey

        Many concerts were canceled due to ticket sales this summer, not just Idol’s concerts. It’s indicative of the economy, not of the show.

      • @ dallasjack

        They cancelled 8 shows out of 100..

    • Michael

      They didn’t even offer Paula that kind of money and she was on the show for years. I don’t think that J-Lo or anyone else who agreed to the gig would be complaining about that paycheck. And who knows what extra incentives/development deals she got along with the cash.

      • Mr. Holloway

        Good point about the development deals…the current version of the story says that didn’t come to fruition, but still…as I said below…getting paid $12 million to judge karaoke is great work if you can get it.

        Also, the fact that they didn’t offer Paula this kind of money (when they probably felt pretty invincible) to keep the chemistry intact and are (over)spending this much on a big name to draw interest after the ratings took a dip last year just strengthens my belief that the show is on its last legs.

      • Diane

        Other outlets are reporting that she was looking for a movie or pilot with Fox as well. She didn’t get it

    • DW

      Yes, poor Jennifer Lopez and her $12 million. Quite the failure, indeed!

      • Mr. Holloway


        However, my point is much less about money (does anyone honestly think she NEEDS this money and that she’ll go broke without this check?) and more about status (going from being one of the world’s biggest stars…to making less money than Ryan Seacrest to do the same show, and hanging out with Randy Jackson in less than a decade).

      • Cato

        If a $12M payday is a failure, sign me up.

      • Mik

        There’s money, and then there’s showbiz money. Showbiz money is insane.

    • bruno

      amen to that.

    • M

      You forget that Seacrests $15/year is for much more than Idol. It’s for many projects combined.

      • J

        Fifteen dollars a year? He’s way overpaid.

    • Donna

      Didn’t Whitney Houston do that with The Bodyguard? Or does that not count since it was a soundtrack? It was No. 1, though–yes??

      • Mr. Holloway

        Actually, even though it went on to be a huge hit, I don’t think “The Bodyguard” was ever #1 in the country.

        As far as the soundtrack thing…I think Whitney contributed like 5 or 6 songs, so I would’ve totally given you that.

    • @ Mr Holloway

      Check out kanye’s song (the one he did at the the VMAs)

      • Mr. Holloway

        Wait, so I’m a d-bag, a scumbag, an a-hole, etc. because I don’t love this move for Lopez or for the show, or am I missing something else?

    • steve

      way to much for what i consider no talent,true joke shows done, going nowhere

  • Jethro

    Sounds like the same thing they did, bring a female singer in who has number one hits that can at least critique the idol wannabes!

    I’ve stopped watching this show until they begin showcasing the Top 10, so it makes no difference to me who Judges the singers.

    I just hope they stick with just the 3 Judges!

    • Michael

      I agree. Completely.

    • JD

      I’m assuming you missed the quotation symbol when you said singer

      • Ap

        Too funny

  • d


    • chichi

      yes! barf!

  • jango

    I don’t know, if making only 12M is considered a failure, then please god, let me fail.

    • Mr. Holloway

      Not so much a “failure”, per se. (I mean, getting paid $12 million to tell people they “looked great” and “had fun” out there is nice work if you can get it.)

      It’s more that this is the rare move that reeks of desperation on both parts. (Fox reaching for a “big” name, and Lopez having to do reality TV with her movie and music career dried up.)

      • Michael

        Desperation on the part of Ms. Lopez would be accepting a gig on Jersey Shore. Getting herself back in the public eye, possibly rejuvinating her career as she’s seen by millions, isn’t an act of desperation. It’s a smart move.

      • Mr. Holloway

        Interesting point.

        Even though we’re looking at it from different angles, I think we’re saying the same thing:

        You’re saying it’s a great opportunity to jump start her career. I’m saying that the fact that her career (and remember she was one of the biggest movie stars in the world not THAT long ago) needs to be rejuvenated to the point that she’s doing “American Idol” is slightly depressing. (I don’t feel like she’d be doing this if “The Back Up” plan had cracked $100 million in the US.)

      • Mr. Holloway

        My basic point:

        If you would’ve told J.Lo in 2001 that she’d eventually be a judge on “American Idol” and that people (like you) could reasonably call it a smart movie, she would’ve jumped out a window.

      • Mr. Holloway

        smart move*

      • Mr. Holloway

        …and I realize “Idol” may not have been around in 2001 (I think it debuted the next year)…but you get my point.

      • kahuna

        Jennifer is over 40 now and is adjusting her career choices as many women over 40 must do.

  • William

    Shouldn’t she have musical talent in order to judge musical talent?

    • Jethro

      And Ellen did?

      • Stormy

        And Simon did?

      • jango

        And Paula did?

      • jango

        Oops. Didn’t see Allie’s post below.

        But seriously, the only difference between Paula and J.Lo is 20 years. They both were awesome dancers with mediocre voices at best.

      • ALM

        I’m in full agreement with Jango & Allie. JLo and Paula were mediocre singers at best (I’m being generous here) who would not have succeeded without the Fly Girl connection.

    • allie

      And Paula did?

    • Dave

      Recognizing musical talent and having musical talent are not mutually exclusive.

      • Randy Jackson

        That’s right, dawg.

    • Kagerou

      Not really, Simon can’t sing but at lest he was in the industry

  • Michael Sacal

    The executives from the Box Network do it again.

  • Really??


    • Michael Sacal

      Those who can’t… judge?

      • jpatm


  • Victor Eloy

    uhmmmmmmI guess by doing this Jennifer Lopez has finally accepted her music career is dead and gone.

    actually I think she enojoyed too much success in the music business. seh shouldn’t compplain, she’s sort of the Paula Abdul from from this decade!

    • JD

      Nope, the offical announcement is coming along with the debut of her new single. So expect to see her perform a few times on the show too. Another reason to skip the results show.

      • Ap

        Her new single??? You know, it makes since for her to get her name back out there if this is the reason she’s doing the show. I’m assuming that her new single will be a dance record. But doesn’t she realize that her time has come and gone? That last “single” she had was just bad.

  • BW

    OK, for the millionth time, it doesn’t take a great singer to know how to critique singing. I’m by no means a great singer, but I know what good and bad singing sounds like. Plus, she showed she knows how to mentor and give good advice from when she was on there before.

    • CM

      Agreed. That is obvious from all the “know-it-all” people that comment on this site every single day. No one on this site is a famous actor or has ever been to directing school, or written a TV show, yet we comment about it everyday. Me being one of them. You don’t have to be great at something to know whether it sucks or not. JLo has been in this business for over 20 years she’s worked with tons of different industry people, so I’m sure she will know what will work and not work. Despite what you think of her she has more experience than the millions of people that vote for their “favorite.” (which is probably why crappy people keep winning)

  • Keith

    She isn’t worth 12 mil! Do her movies even make 12M at the box office anymore? Her CD’s don’t even sell 12K anymore! LOL…all aboard the American Idol FailBoat!!!

    • Lelu

      And your last album sold how many copies? No one stays hot forever. She’s had a fantastic career and is now keeping it going in a very public way. Why is there hate in that?

      • Keith

        Well if they’re trying to keep AI alive, picking a washed up actress/singer isn’t going to help! What does my/your ability to sell or not sell an album have to do with Jennifer Lopez’s inability to sell herself to audiences in both arenas. I think you’re stanning and you can stay pressed!

      • CM

        Hello! Anyone that agrees to be on AI is going to be washed up. Steven Tyler being one of those people. If Madonna had agreed to do it, people would be saying that she is washed up as well. (Even though she is so not). And AI is the most watched show in America, how is it a bad career move to be in millions of homes every week? How is it a bad career move to have everyone talking about you? Answer: Its not! And FYI, No 40 singer can stay relevant forever, especially if she is a woman. I don’t think people would be this dramatic about it if it was a older man that need to revive his career. BTW she is not washed up, she’s freakin 40 people, I mean damn, yall are acting like she is an 80year old going to her grave. Its show business! no older woman that did pop when she was younger is going to be able to sustain her career. It doesn’t happen, EVER!

      • J

        @CM. Cher was 60 when she had a number 1 record.

      • c jones

        Barbra Streisand.

      • c jones


        2 female singers lead the band, and they are in their fifties now, with top hit singles and albums in the past 4 decades!

    • Cato

      You’re worth whatever amount you can convince someone to pay you.

    • Huh?

      Cher has had hits in every decade since the 1960s. And Betty White is in her 80s. That’s a singer/actress and a comedienne/actress. Blows your theory.

  • Here & There

    AI can only be saved if the judges actually select who leaves. Let the viewers vote for the bottom 3, and then the judges should “earn” their money and eliminate the worst. Lately, the best singers were eliminated & some bad singers were still in it.

    • Stormy

      I reiterate, fixing the number of votes per phone # is more important than the judges. If they don’t fix it all we’ll ever have as Idols from now on will be cute guys whether they can or cannot sing. The voting needs to be taken out of the hands of teen and tween girls who text vote like maniacs. Lee Dewyze can’t sing, Kris Allen is not a star and if texting had been around ten years ago, Justin Guarini would have been the first American Idol.

    • ALM

      Taking Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underpants out of the mix, it seems like a blessing in disguise to lose AI–they’ve had more successes from those who *haven’t* won (Chris Daughtry, Clay Aiken, Kellie Pickler, Jennifer Hudson, etc. etc.).

      • WTF?


    • tatar69x

      Had the judges, with their blatant favorites been the only ones selecting, we would have had a Crystal Bowersox-Big Mike Finale. With “out of tune” Lee carried 3rd because they thought he could make money for judges and 19 Entertainment after the competition.

      Power text voting is the bane of the show, but leaving it to 3 or 4 judges whose favorism was so obvious and transparent (Cowell and Kara), is no solution.

  • Mary Sims

    Ridiculous. $12M??? For being a “judge” on a talent show? I’d rather watch Harry Connick Jr. get the job for that much. I won’t be watching Idol anymore.

    • jango

      Sure you won’t Mary….sure, you won’t.

      • Cato

        You beat me to it, Jango.

      • CM


  • JenD

    she was a great mentor, and she’s got a strong personality (yes, that’s the nice way of putting it). i think she’ll make for great t.v. especially with steve tyler to be all wacky. i’m just bummed we still have to watch the dawg.

    • CM

      Agreed. Why the hell did they keep Randy. He is the worst of the bunch. I wish they would have kept Kara over Randy.

      • Stormy

        Not true. Randy and Paula saved Daughtry and David Cook from elimination by Simon. When Paula left it was Randy against Simon and sycophant Kara, Ellen was a non starter, and Randy just gave up. Simon is gone and we’ll see the true Randy again.

  • TJ

    “Jenny from the Fox”

    Wow, that’s just bad, even for this website, lol. I’ll probably tune in just to see this trainwreck unfold, but if the talent that they find resembles the “talent” from this year, I won’t be sticking around for the whole season.

    • Stormy

      There was talent this year? Oh right, I forgot about Siobhan Magnus. Sorry.

      • Right on

        @Stormy-exactly, she actually looked like she cared a lot…the others looked like they got bored. Even the winner had trouble hiding his boredom mind…SMILE LEE SMILE. Hopefully they will change a lot of things so that it is more interesting for the contestants.

      • Rebecca

        Casey James has TALENT. What snobbery to suggest that none of these kids had any talent!!! I’m a vocal coach; trust me, there was talent. Crystal actually has a glorious voice. Siobhan has definite talent. Mike. Even Aaron. (Lee was the worst of them). Just not David Cook, Kelly, Daughtry, Carrie Underwood-level talent.

    • cat

      whether you “stick around” for the whole season, or just watch it once, nobody cares. I don’t watch shows that I think suck. Why do you?

  • Lem

    Okay, producer Nigel recently said too much emphasis is on the judges and not the contestants. Now, they do this ?

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