Mariah Carey Finalizing Deal To Judge ‘American Idol’

Mariah Carey’s songs might officially be off-limits on “American Idol”: The diva is reportedly finalizing her contract to become a judge on the singing competition.

According to Deadline, if Carey’s deal goes through, she will earn more than $17 million for one season — eclipsing Britney Spears’ reported $15 million paycheck for “X Factor.”

After last week’s “Idol” judging shakeup, which saw Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler head for the exits after two years on the job, Carey was one of the first names rumored to be in the running. The superstar’s hubby, Nick Cannon, wasn’t sure at the time whether “Idol” had deep enough pockets. “I don’t know if they can afford Mariah Carey,” Cannon told TMZ on Sunday. “That’s a lot of money.”

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Pictured: Singer Mariah Carey poses with the Favorite R&B Artist Award in the press room during the People’s Choice Awards 2010 held at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on January 6, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images for PCA)