The NY Post is reporting that salary figures for Simon Cowell's renewal of his American Idol contract are leaking. This past year he made $36M for his five months of work being a judge on Idol. For his next contract he would like a raise to the tune of $144M for his five months on the show. Umm, that is a ridiculous f**king amount of money for someone who speaks about 6 minutes for every hour he is on the air. To be fair, lets say there are about 25 episodes of Idol. In addition to those there are the audition cities where Simon has to put in almost an 8 hour day four or five times with only cigarette breaks, lunch breaks, coffee breaks and whatever breaks he wants.
Then there are the Hollywood days and then the show itself. Lets see if we can get a total for all of this.
We will be very conservative.
10 audition days at 8 hours a day equals 80 hours.
4 Hollywood days at 8 hours a day equals 32 hours.
25 shows at 4 hours a show equals 100 hours.
Promotions, press for the show equals 20 hours.
Total hours on the show 232 hours over the course of five months. Salary $144M which equals about $620,000 an hour. Minimum wage varies in the United States from state to state, but in California it is $8 an hour unless you work in San Francisco.
At $8 an hour, it would take a worker 77,500 hours just to make what Simon is going to make for one hour working on American Idol. The average number of hours worked in a year for most people is 2,000.
What this means is that if you are a minimum wage earner in California and work 40 hours a week for 39 years you will earn what Simon Cowell earns for one hour of judging American Idol. This doesn't sound very fair does it? And remember my estimates were conservative. Plus, the work that minimum wage earner is performing is much harder than saying, "I didn't like it." Oh, and the minimum wage earner probably doesn't have health insurance either and probably can't afford to go anywhere on their two weeks of vacation each year, if they even get any vacation.