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Singer Jennifer Lopez Signs $12M American Idol Contract

By Laura Strachan, Esq. on September 15, 2010 7:02 AM

And the next American Idol (judge)... singer Jennifer Lopez. In what seems to be a revolving door of celebrity judges, American Idol announced that the actress/singer/clothing designer will be replacing Kara DioGuardi with a one-year $12 million contract. Also leaving this season is the man who started it all, Simon Cowell and comedian Ellen DeGeneres.

New York Daily News reports that Lopez is, "very excited" to serve as a judge on the hit show. Lopez will join Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler and Randy Jackson (the sole remaining original judge) on the panel that will begin auditions next week. The 41 year-old Lopez was hoping to negotiate a motion picture and TV pilot to accompany her new job, although details have not been publicized. CBS adds: "She was angling for an overall deal at Fox, including a motion picture, to keep the movie career going. But Fox said no."

High-priced contract negotiations can get heated, but in an industry built on putting pen to paper, J.Lo's American Idol contract is still just an employment contract at heart. The one year contract, like any other employment contract, spells out the rights and responsibilities of each party, and the likely penalties in the event of a breach. Additionally, employment contracts detail the start date, salary, and benefits.

The few extra zeros behind Jennifer Lopez's salary does not change the nature of the contract. Of course, J.Lo does not do anything without claims of potential diva behavior, and her American Idol contract is no exception -- CBS reports that Lopez originally sought $15 million for her one year of service to the franchise. In the end, it takes two to enter into a contract, and a $12 million deal looks good from here.

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