Ryan Seacrest jumps to CAA

'American Idol' host was with WMA for 10 years

Ryan Seacrest has signed with CAA after 10 years at WMA.

The news comes on the heels of the "American Idol" emcee becoming the highest-paid reality host with a new three-year, $45 million deal to continue his duties on America's top-rated show.

Seacrest did not use an agent in that deal. Instead, he was repped by his attorney Craig Jacobson and Adam Sher, a former WMA agent who once co-represented him with John Ferriter until recently leaving the agency to join Seacrest's production shingle Ryan Seacrest Prods.

Going into the renegotiations for "Idol," Seacrest had informed his long-term reps at WMA, which had just merged with Endeavor to form WME, that the agency would not commission any future deals for "Idol" or for his lucrative radio deal with Clear Channel.

That was not acceptable to the agency, sources said

The "Idol" and radio pacts are probably the biggest revenue source in Seacrest's portfolio, but he is also a big earner in other areas, including his wide-reaching deal with Comcast and its E! Entertainment, his hosting job on New Year's Eve, and his growing production company that is behind such shows as E!'s "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" and ABC's upcoming Jamie Oliver reality show.

In the past 10 years, Ferriter and Sher negotiated Seacrest's first pact with "Idol," as well as his original radio deal.

Seacrest recently met with CAA, with the agency's Kevin Huvane, Alan Berger, Jeff Jacobs and Brian Weinstein present at the meeting.

After returning from vacation early this week, Seacrest made the decision to go with CAA and informed his new agency Tuesday night.

For CAA, not representing Seacrest for "Idol" is not a big financial hit as the agency has the package on the show and wouldn't have been able to get a commission on him anyway.

Additionally, CAA reps Seacrest's close friend on the show Simon Cowell, whose main rep at CAA is Alan Berger.

With Seacrest on board, CAA will have the three main talent pieces on "Idol": creator Simon Fuller, Cowell and Seacrest.
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