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Report: 'American Idol had told Simon Cowell to name his price

By Christopher Rocchio, 01/21/2010 

There was apparently no amount of money that could have persuaded Simon Cowell to remain on American Idol's judging panel.

"The American Idol people were desperate for Simon to stay," a show insider told Life & Style magazine in a Thursday report. "They told him to name his price, but he still walked away."

Earlier this month, Cowell inked a deal with Fox that will end his American Idol judging role while also launching his British The X Factor reality competition series for the network in Fall 2011.

"Simon hopes to blow American Idol out of the water with The X Factor," the insider told Life & Style.

Cowell has suggested that host Ryan Seacrest should pull double duty, which a show insider told E! News was "in play." In addition, Elton John was a rumored replacement, however his representative subsequently denied it.

Actor/singer Jamie Foxx and Interscope Records co-founder Jimmy Iovine are currently "strong contenders" for Cowell's position, the insider told Life & Style.

While Fox has remained mum on a possible replacement, American Idol creator Simon Fuller recently stated he's received numerous calls and that "everyone's interested" in Cowell's soon-to-be-former position.

(Photo credit Fox)

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