Jennifer Lopez in $20 million Deal to Return to American Idol

American Idol’s executive producer Englishman Nigel Lythgoe has announced that Jennifer Lopez will join the panel for the next season of American Idol, which begins in January.

Lythgoe reported her participation during Ryan Seacrest`s radio show Wednesday morning.

“I am delighted to say that all three judges, along with the brilliant host of ‘American Idol’ is back for the next season,” Lythgoe said.

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Jennifer Lopez along with Steven Tyler and Randy Jackson were the judges last season, when Christian singer Scotty McCreery emerged victorious.

According to the New York Post’s Page Six, Lopez is negotiating a deal that could be worth up to $20 million to return to “Idol”. In the last season she signed a contract of $12 million.

According to a source, the nature of these negotiations has made Lopez’s fellow judges anxious. Reportedly they also now want more money after seeing her request for a huge pay increase.

"Steven is halfway through a two-year deal, and his management has asked for more money," the source said.

They argue he was just as sensational and as popular on the panel as Jennifer, said the source. “It’s hoped they can come to a compromise to keep Steven happy, because the producers love him."

Aerosmith front man Tyler who had already closed a two-year deal will be getting $10 million a year.

Jennifer Lopez and Tyler accepted to join last season Idol’s panel after the departure of original judge Simon Cowell.

Although Nigel Lythgoe has announced Lopez will be back, it is not entirely official yet since Fox network, which airs “Idol” has not confirmed her return.

Top programming executives for the Fox network were silent about the issue at a meeting of television critics in Los Angeles last week.

According to, a showbiz news web site, Lopez had already closed the $20 million deal to return to the upcoming season.

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