What Can 18 Million Dollars Buy You? The Biggest Diva of all Time!


By Craig Thornton

The news broke late in the day yesterday, but it isn't exactly news to those on the inside: Mariah Carey will take Jennifer Lopez's place as the Diva judge next season.

Mariah is definitely getting a hefty paycheck and the price tag for her services varies depending on the source. Of course it is standard practice to shroud her true salary, but after consulting several sources Mariah's salary range seems to be most likely between 15 and 18 million. Some sources are saying $12 million, but considering Jennifer Lopez reportedly made 15 million her second year, chances are Mariah would not even consider joining for less than Jennifer was making when she left.

Jennifer's departure seems to be a mutual agreement between the Diva and Fox. Jennifer wanted more time to focus on other projects and Fox wanted to shake up the judges' table after a huge slide in ratings last year. The fact that Jennifer asked for a raise probably accelerated her exit. Again, numbers are nebulous here, but Lopez' asking price supposedly leaped from 15 to 17 or even 20 million for third year services. Not bad for Jenny from the Block.

Rumors are still swirling about the two other judge's chairs. This buzz includes the possibility and likelihood of Randy Jackson staying or going and for the third spot to be filled either by a much younger female singer or a wild card male judge.

I am sensing that Randy will be back, despite his total lack of interesting and new things to say. He reportedly is Mariah's manager and I can't imagine him not negotiating himself into her deal. But the third slot seems to be a complete mystery at this point.

One of the most interesting ideas to circulate is that Adam Lambert, former AI runner up might be an upcoming judge. This would be a fantastic spin. It could be the start of a new mentoring program for American Idol.

Still, it isn't over until it's over and don't count out Fox's ability to surprise with their choice of the third judge.

Check out these entertainment news stories about Mariah joining AI - all sources that I used.

Entertainment Weekly


The Daily Mail

Below is the official press release from FOX that I received.

Monday, July 23, 2012 HOT FROM FOX…



Mariah Carey, one of the best-selling female recording artists of all time, has joined AMERICAN IDOL as a new judge. A five-time Grammy Award-winning global superstar with more than 200 million records sold worldwide and more No. 1 songs than any solo artist in history, her 18 Billboard No. 1 singles (17 of which Carey wrote) rival all but The Beatles. Carey joins the judges’ panel when AMERICAN IDOL returns in January 2013 on FOX.

“As a singer, songwriter and producer, it’s going to be fun and rewarding to help find new talent and give back with AMERICAN IDOL,” said Mariah Carey. “I’m currently in the studio working on my new album and its first single, ‘Triumphant,’ which will be out early next month. I can’t wait to channel my creative energy as a part of this show which is a massive global phenomenon.”

“We are proud to have one of the world's greatest-ever female singers join our show,” said IDOL creator and executive producer Simon Fuller. “Mariah defines the word 'Idol' and will inspire every singer that has the honor of performing in front of her.”

“Mariah Carey is a global icon whose list of musical accomplishments is unprecedented,” said Cecile Frot-Coutaz, CEO, FremantleMedia. “Having sold more than 200 million records worldwide, she’s a true artist, ideally suited to identify and nurture AMERICAN IDOL’s next great music superstars. We warmly welcome her to the IDOL family.”

“Mariah Carey is the real deal. Not only is she one of the best-selling artists and performers on the planet and one of the world’s most gifted vocalists, she also is a successful songwriter, record producer and actress,” said Mike Darnell, President of Alternative Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company. “She has a deep knowledge of music and a career insight that will make her a really amazing asset to our judges’ table and to our contestants. It’s the dream of almost everyone who auditions for IDOL to sing like Mariah and we couldn’t be happier to have her be part of the show.”

With a distinct five-octave vocal range, prolific songwriting and producing talent, Carey has defined the modern pop performance. As a singer/songwriter/producer, she has been recognized with five Grammy Awards, nine American Music Awards, Billboard’s Artist of the Decade Award, the World Music Award for World’s Best Selling Female Artist of the Millennium and BMI’s Icon Award, to name a few. She has two consecutive and unparalleled Billboard Song of the Decade titles: “One Sweet Day” (with Boyz II Men); and “We Belong Together,” further marking her massive presence on the charts since her 1990 song debut “Vision of Love.” Mariah became the second artist in history and the first female performer to have a song debut at No. 1 with “Fantasy” (1995), the groundbreaking collaboration with O.D.B. of the innovative rap group Wu-Tang Clan. Carey’s original holiday classic, “All I Want For Christmas is You,” redefined its place in pop culture as one of the greatest holiday hits of all time when it reached

No. 1 on the Billboard charts in 2011, 17 years after its debut. Carey’s influential and stellar contribution to the music industry spans multiple genres and is showcased through a multifaceted hit catalogue as well as a long list of diverse collaborations.

Carey's ongoing impact transcends the music industry and has left an indelible imprint upon the world at large. She recently made a substantial mark in film with her critically acclaimed role as a social worker in “Precious,” the 2009 film based on the novel “Push,” by Sapphire. A Congressional Award recipient, Carey has generously donated her time and energy to a range of domestic and international philanthropic causes near to her heart, including The Fresh Air Fund/Camp Mariah (a retreat where inner-city children explore career development), Save the Music Foundation and Make-a-Wish Foundation, among several others.

Carey is currently in the studio, writing, recording and executive-producing her next album for Island Def Jam Music Group, with the lead single “Triumphant.”

Monday, December 5, 2016
, Watertown, NY

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