Ryan Seacrest is nearing a renewal of his contract with Fox’s “American Idol,” individuals with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap. He’s also looking to expand his role with Clear Channel Communications, while his role at NBCUniversal will probably decrease.
Despite reports that state otherwise, Seacrest will sign a deal for two more years with the singing competition, despite its flagging ratings. A host of the competition since its 2002 debut, the contract renewal would take Seacrest through Season 15.
Representatives for producers 19 Entertainment and Fox had no comment on the negotiations.
In addition, Seacrest is looking to expand his deal with radio partner Clear Channel Communications. In this expanded role, Seacrest would produce programs via Ryan Seacrest Productions and expand his role in its brand iHeartRadio. For examples on what he’s looking to do more of, Seacrest hosted the “One Direction iHeartRadio Album Release Party” that aired on The CW in December. And Ryan Seacrest Productions and Clear Channel co-produce the first-ever iHeartRadio Awards which will air on NBC on May 1.
Seacrest’s future with NBCUniversal is less clear. In 2012, he signed an extensive talent contract deal with NBCUniversal that included contributions to the “Today” show, Olympics coverage, election coverage and other special events. But, his role on “Today” never became very substantial.
Seacrest’s name was bandied about as a potential replacement for Matt Lauer, but instead he became special correspondent for “Today” show. However, industry insiders speculated that Seacrest was disappointed that his role with the show never quite matched expectations. Aside from hosting NBC’s ratings bomb “Million Second Quiz,” Seacrest was even forced to cover the Sochi Olympics for “Today” from L.A. in reduced pre-taped segments due to his “Idol” hosting duty conflicts in Los Angeles.
As for NBCU property E!, Seacrest had long pulled out of anchoring duties on E! News and he’s looking to do the same for his red carpet appearances for the channel. If he doesn’t renew his deal with NBCU, which has already lapsed, he will continue producing and pitching series to the network. Ryan Seacrest Productions currently produces the Kardashian franchise of shows, as well as the “Live From the Red Carpet” specials for E!.
An E! representative wouldn’t comment on negotiations.