After weeks of speculation FOX’s American Idol has announced that Mariah Carey will serve as a new judge during their upcoming season. The renowned vocalist will join Randy Jackson in judging aspiring singers, filling one of the two open spots that was left vacant by the departures of Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler.
"It’s the biggest recording artist than any of these [singing competition] shows have ever had," said Fox entertainment president Kevin Reilly during a press tour on Monday. "It’s an artist many of these contestants have tried to emulate. [The deal] only concluded only hours ago. Not being the only game in town we need to keep things fresh."
With NBC’s The Voice upping their talent and signing Mary J. Blige as a team adviser, FOX is swinging back with Carey and creating healthy competition. The pop star’s salary is rumored to be somewhere above $12 million, the sum of what was paid to Jennifer Lopez during her first year on Idol, and possibly as high as $17 million.
"It’s gonna be so much fun working on @AmericanIdol. As a singer-songwriter, I'm excited to help find and nurture new talent. LYM! –MC"
The last season of Idol had the largest ratings drop in the show's history, down 23%. The five-time Grammy winner and bestselling recording artist might give the show the boost it needs, and revive its fan base. FOX has yet to release the name of its third judge.
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(Photo: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for Caesars Entertainment)