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'The X Factor': Simon Cowell on 'my big mouth,' and all four judges on their on-screen bickering

After last night’s colossal two-and-a-half-hour live episode of The X Factor, judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, Nicole Scherzinger, and L.A. Reid took time out to speak with press on the X Factor stage. (Thankfully, there were no backup dancers.) EW also took time to talk with Simon about how he feels the show is doing so far this season, and what it’s like to be both a judge and the Man In Charge. On the second page, all four judges weigh in on their tough eliminations, their biggest competition, and what their take is on all the “squabbling” happening between them on air. (Paula spoke with EW at the end of the night, and so our interview was cut a bit short.)

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How do you feel the show’s been doing? You talked a big game as the show was beginning about wanting an audience number that the show hasn’t been able to reach yet.
SIMON COWELL: I mean, I opened my big mouth, basically, as usual, but I don’t regret it. What I was feeling at the time was, and I still feel it now, you want a show that’s going to go over 20 million. And you do everything you can to do it. In the real world, I’ve seen where all the other shows have done, where we’ve done — I’m feeling good about it. I’m feeling momentum. I know when it goes the other way, and that’s not a nice place to be.  READ FULL STORY

Simon Cowell regrets giant 'X Factor' ratings prediction

Simon Cowell admits he regrets saying ratings less than 20 million for the U.S. version of The X Factor would be a failure. The show’s September debut earned 12.5 million viewers, which was less than the premiere of the comedy Modern Family, the leader of the night with 14.5 million viewers. The X Factor held those numbers for the second episode. In week two, ratings hovered around 12 million viewers for each episode. “I’m not going to lie. I wanted 20 million when we launched,” said Cowell, “but now I’m kind of back in the real world and I’m seeing this grow naturally. I’m as happy as I’ve ever been.” READ FULL STORY

'The X Factor' premiere: On the scene with Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, Nicole Scherzinger, and L.A. Reid

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By the time the four celebrity judges made their debut at the premiere of Simon Cowell’s U.S. version of his British hit The X Factor, the audience had already been waiting for well over an hour. But this, Cowell explained, was for good reason. “The reason that we’re late, in the true tradition of reality TV, is that the guys who were making the show were an hour late,” he said. “So they were editing the show literally until the last second, which is why we were all delayed. So, it better be worth it.”

Was it worth it? Well, this former skeptic says yes. Cowell, along with his bosom buddy Paula Abdul and newcomers Nicole Scherzinger and L.A. Reid, sat down at the ArcLight Hollywood Wednesday night for a 90 minute-screening with an assortment of Fox employees, reporters, radio contest winners, and USC theater students. After the screening, the audience was treated to a bizarre and occasionally awkward question and answer session that debuted the tremendous chemistry between the judges.

The X Factor will eventually feature a mentoring aspect similar to The Voice, with each judge leading a group segmented according to age—anyone over 12 could audition. The premiere episode was your standard early audition fare, but with more drama than American Idol and fewer painful auditory experiences. Think longer, more fleshed out backstories (Meth addiction! Verbally abusive husbands! Someone named Xander Alexander!), and less of this. Also, the contestants performed in front of thousands of people instead of just the judges, and ranged from a middle schooler to an octogenarian. A few powerful performances stood out (watch out for Melanie Amaro), and one almost made Abdul vomit.

The X Factor will premiere on Sept. 21, but you can read about Cowell fighting with audience members and Abdul and Scherzinger’s jealousies after the jump: READ FULL STORY

Simon Cowell talks 'The X Factor': 'Old dog' Paula, 'fantastically self-centered' Nicole, and his plans to get the audience drunk

A rather jaunty Simon Cowell, who’s bringing a U.S. version of his British hit The X Factor to Fox on Sept. 21, talked to reporters Tuesday about his experience filming so far. “I would say the American audiences are more vocal,” he said. “When they like someone, they let you know. And they certainly let you know when they disagree with you. There were a few occasions when we had to — otherwise I may have gotten seriously injured — bring back certain contestants we’d said no to.”

Will this aggression stand, man? It will! “We did say to [the audience], you’re like the fifth judge here. So it was fun, and everywhere we went, the crowds were good. Better in the evenings, because you could feel that they were drunk. I might do that for the live shows — just make everybody drink.”

More from reality TV’s newest boozehound after the jump: READ FULL STORY

Simon Cowell believes 'X Factor' can top 'Idol'

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Can Simon Cowell’s The X Factor be the show that finally overthrows American Idol as the top-rated series on TV?

Cowell thinks so. Asked by a critic at Fox’s press tour in Beverly Hills if the U.S. version of the Brit hit can draw bigger numbers than his previous show, Cowell replied, “If I didn’t think we could — and it’s not just Idol; it’s any show — you don’t enter something for the silver medal. You do it because you want to be number one. And for the next few months, we’re going to shove everything at this to try and make it the best show on TV.”

Cowell made the remarks while appearing via satellite during an occasionally bizarre panel with his fellow Factor judges and producers. Executives announced Factor will have a special two-and-a-half-hour episode this fall — a rarity on Fox, which only programs to 10 p.m. — and said it would be a more performance-oriented show than Idol. “I wouldn’t have made the show unless I thought it would’ve been different,” Cowell said. “We see this as a game changer.” READ FULL STORY

First 'X Factor' judges photo and preview: Simon Cowell mocks 'American Idol'

Aww, don’t they look all sweet? Below is the first official judges photo from Fox’s The X Factor, with Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, L.A. Reid and that girl from the Pussycat Dolls, as well as a video preview. Don’t be fooled, the battle lines are being drawn. Cowell’s X Factor preview just debuted during MLB All-Star Game tonight takes a swipe at Fox’s own American Idol. See what you think: Is Cowell just spoofing the idea of being nice in this? Seems to us like he’s taking a shot at his former show: READ FULL STORY

Fox announces 'X Factor' premiere date

Simon Cowell’s much-anticipated new music reality competition, The X Factor, will finally arrive on Sept. 21, Fox has announced. The show will debut with a two-hour premiere on a Wednesday night, to be followed the following night by another two-hour episode.

Fox also confirmed the premiere dates for its entire fall season, after the jump:

Saturday, Sept. 10
8:00-8:30 PM ET/PT              COPS (Season Premiere)
8:30-9:00 PM ET/PT              COPS (Encore Episode)

Sunday, Sept. 18
8:00-11:00 PM ET/                63RD PRIMETIME EMMY AWARDS (Live Telecast)
5:00-8:00 PM PT READ FULL STORY

Simon Cowell explains Cheryl Cole's departure from 'X Factor'

Hours after it was confirmed that British singer Cheryl Cole would not be part of either the British or American version of The X Factor, Simon Cowell said the show’s producers believed their decision “would be beneficial to her, funny enough,” according to the Associated Press.

Yesterday, Fox and producers announced that Cole was to be replaced on the network’s version of the show by Nicole Scherzinger, who will shift from co-host to judge. Cowell dismissed reports that Cole, who had already been a judge on the U.K’s X Factor, lacked chemistry with fellow judge Paula Abdul or that her accent was a hurdle for American audiences. “She was good on the American show,” Cowell said. “I personally thought she was missing her family and friends. She just looked a little bit, I wouldn’t say uncomfortable, but just not as happy as I’ve seen her on previous shows.”

Cowell said he’d texted Cole that he assumes “full responsibility,” and that he hopes his friendship with her remains solid. “I always, always would hold the door open to work with her again,” he said.

Read more:
Cheryl Cole offered job back
Fox’s new X Factor trailer

Official: Nicole Scherzinger replaces Cheryl Cole on 'The X-Factor'

More crazy news from Fox’s The X Factor. It was announced today that Nicole Scherzinger will replace Brit singer Cheryl Cole on the judging panel for the singing show. She will join Simon Cowell, L.A. Reid and Paula Abdul in their search to find another “global superstar” or group who could ultimately win a $5 million dollar recording deal.

Nicole has previously joined Cowell as a guest judge on The X Factor for the UK version of the show in 2010. She had filled in for Cole, who was a U.K. judge, too.

Cole was originally announced as part of the show’s U.S. judging panel last month, participated in early judging rounds, then was seemingly booted off. Over the last few days, however, news emerged that she was being offered another role on the show. READ FULL STORY

'The Voice' vs. 'X Factor': Fox says 'we have the gold standard'

Fox execs say The X Factor is their tentpole new show next season and its hardly a wonder: The series gives the network another potential American Idol, except this one will air in the fall.

But what about NBC’s The Voice? Its format is pretty similar, after all, and has done really well in the ratings. Does The Voice take away anything from X Factor?

“We feel we have the gold standard in Idol and X Factor,” Fox entertainment chairman Peter Rice told reporters on Monday. “And in Simon Cowell, we have the star of the genre at the pinnacle of his game. There’s excitement and buzz. We had more people [5,000] show up for auditions for Factor than we ever had for Idol. We’re going to schedule them and play our game.” READ FULL STORY

On the scene at the first 'X Factor' taping: Simon and Paula reunite, while the crowd battles L.A. Reid

The most anticipated new TV series of 2011 really kicked off on Sunday as the four X Factor judges — Simon Cowell, singer Cheryl Cole, record-label exec L.A. Reid, and, yes, Paula Abdul – gathered to audition wannabe superstars in downtown Los Angeles.

Before the judges stepped onto the stage of the Galen Center on the campus of the University of Southern California, the show’s hosts, former Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger and British TV personality Steve Jones, introduced themselves to the audience. “You’re all probably wondering, Who the hell is this douche?” said the self-deprecating Jones, while Scherzinger danced around him. “Steve’s actually a great singer,” Scherzinger said. “You wanna hear him?” The crowd cheered him on, at which point he offered to croon…“Back for Good” by the very British group Take That. (Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge Take That fan, but I think I could have counted on one hand the people there who had any idea of what he was talking about.)  READ FULL STORY

UPDATED: Simon Cowell says Paula Abdul, Cheryl Cole will join 'The X Factor'

Simon Cowell has chosen his judging panel for this fall’s The X Factor on Fox. According to Deadline’s Nikki Finke, former American Idol judge Paula Abdul and British singer Cheryl Cole will join Cowell and Antonio “L.A.” Reid on the panel. Cole judged on the fifth, sixth, and seventh seasons of Cowell’s British version of The X Factor. “Fox is desperate to hire her,” said Cowell. Fox has yet to officially announce the judges.

UPDATE: Sources confirm Cowell wants Abdul and Cole, both names he’s mentioned before, though deals are not yet done. The final judging panel is expected to be announced relatively soon, since X Factor auditions in front of the judges start in less than two weeks. Also, sources tell EW singer Nicole Scherzinger is close to landing one of the show’s two host spots. — Additional reporting by James Hibberd

More ‘X Factor’ on Inside TV:
Simon Cowell expects Mariah Carey to join ‘X Factor’ ‘in some form’
L.A. Reid: Cheryl Cole is joining ‘X Factor’
Simon Cowell scoop: The ‘X Factor’ star talks L.A. Reid, Paula Abdul … and Rebecca Black

Simon Cowell expects Mariah Carey to join 'X Factor' 'in some form'

Simon Cowell says he is still looking for two more judges to join L.A. Reid on the new show, The X Factor (despite the fact that Reid revealed Cheryl Cole will appear on the U.S. version of the show). And if Cowell gets his way — and he normally does — Mariah Carey will play some role on his music competition. In a radio interview with Jackie Brown on 92.9 in Spokane, Wash., Cowell acknowledged that Carey’s imminent motherhood was a stumbling block for extensive involvement, but he seemed confident that the chanteuse would appear. “I think Mariah will have a role on the live shows,” said Cowell. “I met her recently and she was in great form. Her idea was to be the judge of the judges, which of course, only Mariah can come up with. But she’ll be involved in some form. I literally adore her. I love her to bits.”

Representatives for Cowell and Carey did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Read more:
Pregnant Mariah Carey gets naked, bares her baby bump
L.A. Reid: Cheryl Cole is joining ‘X Factor’
Simon Cowell scoop: The ‘X Factor’ star talks L.A. Reid, Paula Abdul … and Rebecca Black

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