By Heather Ericson, EnStarz | May 26, 2012 12:55 PM EDT
In the past seasons of American Idol, the first runner-up usually had a pretty good chance at superstardom as well - but it seems that the terms have changed for the first time in the show's history.
According to reports, the talent show is no longer offering big paychecks to the runner-up, and no guaranteed album deal. With no guaranteed contract, Jessica Sanchez might now earn only $30,000 in advances for recording singles - according to the "Idol" contracts the contestants signed earlier this year.
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AP reported that previous American Idol runner-ups were guaranteed at least $175,000 in advances. But now Sanchez will only receive $30,000 if she performs four singles, and $60,000 if she records an EP of four to 10 songs.
It seems that the pay cut comes after the average number of viewers fell from an all time high of $30 million down to barely $20 million for the finals.
However, the winner Phillip Phillips will receive $300,000 in advances, the same as last year's champ Scott McCreery.
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