The man behind American Idol Simon Fuller has been inundated with calls from celebrities wanting to replace Simon Cowell on the show.

But Simon, who created the template for the US show with Pop Idol in the UK, said there was no rush to fill the star’s seat.

He said: “A day doesn’t pass that I don’t get a call from an agent of a superstar saying, ‘Can we talk?’ – everyone’s interested, and that’s going to go on month after month.

“When we have to do something about Simon, I’ll be in the luxury position of looking at all the greatest stars of the world. We can do so much with it.”

Ellen DeGeneres was chosen to replace original panellist Paula Abdul on the talent show, consistently the top-rated TV programme in the US.

Pop mogul Simon Cowell is leaving American Idol to make The X Factor in the US, starting next year.