BRAND NEW ON E!
Jennifer Garner could be spying a heftier paycheck.
According to the trades, the actress is in final talks with producers of her ABC drama Alias for a new deal that will not only keep her kicking butt on the series through the 2007-08 television season, but also award her a handsome pay raise.
Touchstone Television is expected to bump the 31-year-old Garner's salary from its current $45,000 per episode to a more star-worthy $150,000 per, bringing her total income for just one 22-episode season to $3.3 million.
Garner just garnered her second straight Emmy nomination for Lead Actress in a Drama for the high-octane spy thriller. She plays sexy sophisticated Sydney Bristow, a CIA agent working to bring down the world's deadliest terrorist organizations, while dealing with the ultimate dysfunctional family--her good-guy father wants to kill her mother, a Russian spy he believed dead.
Since debuting in the fall of 2001, the J.J. Abrams-created Alias has earned Garner a hugely devoted fan base. In addition to her Emmy nods, Garner scored a Golden Globe win last year for her performance.
Now heading into its third season, Alias's ratings have yet to match the popularity of its leading lady (it's still considered a cult series), but that hasn't stopped the ratings-challenged Alphabet net from betting on her burgeoning fame. The network is shelling out the big bucks to lock Garner into a long-term deal with the expectation that a bigger audience will follow.
Execs at Touchstone and ABC did not return calls for comment Friday. Neither did Garner's publicist.
The actress' star power has already propelled her onto Hollywood's A-list. She caught the attention of Steven Spielberg, who cast her in a cameo opposite Leonardo DiCaprio in Catch Me If You Can, and she had a showcase role as Elektra going head-to-head with Ben Affleck in Daredevil. (Fox already has an Electra spinoff on the drawing board, with Garner back to reprise the role.)
She's next slated to appear in 13 Going on 30, a Big-style comedy, and replaced Gwyneth Paltrow in the indie feature Happy Endings with Lisa Kudrow.
Not too bad for a lady who was bouncing around Tinseltown's minor leagues just two years ago.
Of course, the big new contract is bittersweet for Garner. She's currently going through a divorce with Scott Foley and has seen rumors of her post-Foley romances turn up as gossip-page fodder.