Ryan Seacrest learned many lessons at the foot of his late mentor, Dick Clark . One of them appears to be: Don’t rock the boat. Especially if it’s a eight-figure luxury yacht. That’s the long way of saying that Seacrest has inked a two-year deal to stay with “American Idol” to a reported cool $15 million a year.
“For the last 11 seasons, I’ve had the privilege to be a part of one of television’s most iconic shows. It’s been a wild ride, and I’m excited for my journey with ‘American Idol to continue,” Seacrest said in a statement. “The legions of fans, amazingly talented contestants, judges, and producers, along with the hard working ‘Idol’ crew, impress me every time we go on air and make hosting the show a dream job.”
Seacrest has hosted the show since its launch in 2002, and though the judging panel has undergone a series of overhauls over the past four seasons, the genial entrepreneur has been the one constant in the mix.
“Ryan is one of a kind,” said Mike Darnell, president of alternative entertainment at FOX. “His ability to engage the viewers, keep the contestants at ease during intense moments and adapt to any situation, especially during the live shows, solidifies him as the absolute best in the business. He is an integral part of why ‘American Idol’ is a true phenomenon, and we can’t imagine doing this show without him.”
Of course, Seacrest has multiple irons in the fire besides his “Idol” gig, from the various Kardashian-related shows on the E! network, to his hosting and producing gig on “E! News,” red-carpet awards show coverage, morning radio show and an upcoming pact to launch his own entertainment cable channel this summer called AXS TV . He’s also finishing up a deal with NBCUniversal that will include a gig as part of this summer’s Olympics coverage.