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After months of negotiations, Ryan Seacrest is officially returning for the American Idol reboot. The announcement came today via Live With Kelly And Ryan when host Kelly Ripa announced the exciting news on behalf of her co-host Seacrest, who confirmed the announcement as well. American Idol fans who thought the deal might fall through can finally breathe easy, that is unless they're Brian Dunkleman.
The deal requires that Ryan Seacrest be in Los Angeles Sunday nights for the live show, which will require a lot of flight time considering his current duties on ABC. As of now, Seacrest will fly out of Los Angeles on a red eye Sunday night so that he can arrive back in New York Monday on time to host Live With Kelly And Ryan, as well as his radio show on iHeartRadio. Seacrest won't be the only person making that trek though, as THR says eliminated contestants on American Idol will be interviewed on Live With Kelly And Ryan as an added bonus for fans.
Details regarding Ryan Seacrest's deal are unknown, but we reported three weeks ago that Ryan Seacrest was holding out for an executive producer credit to solidify his return. Seacrest was recently offered a salary of around $10-$15 million, which is still well below what American Idol gave Katy Perry. If Seacrest ended up getting paid around that number, one has to wonder how much money is left for the remaining judges. With the significant chunk of their budget presumably eaten up, it'll be interesting to see who's name pops up in the coming weeks.
The cost for Ryan Seacrest is worth it though as the host of American Idol was the most consistent member of the singing series from start to finish. To pass on him after he hosted for fifteen years would've been upsetting to fans, especially when he's already on another show on ABC. For once, it's better to hear "Seacrest in," than out!
With Ryan Seacrest locked down, American Idol can continue negotiations and hopefully still make their estimated release of early 2018 or spring. That's a good thing for ABC, as it appears former Idol network Fox is already making moves to introduce a competitor to its former show when it makes its return. With NBC's The Voice presumably premiering before both shows this September, 2018 should be a great time for fans of reality singing shows.
As mentioned, American Idol is currently expected to make its ABC debut sometime in early 2018 or spring. For more on Ryan Seacrest, feel free to learn more about how he took his long-term relationship to the next level not that long ago, or why Simon Cowell is never going to return to the series ever again. For information regarding the latest and greatest shows of the summer, check out our summer premiere guide.