Simon Cowell IS leaving Idol at the end of 2009. Itâ€™s all going down right now at the TV Critics Press Association Tour in Pasadena.
Simon just signed an agreement with FOX to bring X-Factor stateside in the fall of 2011! He will executive produce, and act as judge on the show.
Hereâ€™s how the FOX schedule will run: American Idol in the Winter/Spring, So You Think You Can Dance in the Summer and X Factor in the Fall.
“We reached an agreement formally…this morning. What we have agreed is that ‘The X Factor’ will launch in America in 2011 with me judging the show and executive producing. Because of that, this will be my last season on ‘American Idol’ this year, ” Simon told reporters today.
“I was offered a lot of money to stay on, ” Cowell said. “But that wasn’t the reason behind it. I wanted to do something different. I wanted a new challenge.” (Unlike Idol, Simon has an ownership stake in X Factor) Plus, Simon felt it would have been impossible to do both X Factor and Idol.
Simon hints that he will work with Paula Abdul in some capacity, but stops short of announcing her as one of the judges. An announcement about the other X Factor judges will be made fairly soon.
Simon says he wants to leave Idol this year bigger and better than everâ€ (hopefully, he means he wonâ€™t be phoning it in as usual).
Simon also expects Idol will remain the #1 show and that he would not have brought X Factor to the states if he didnâ€™t believe they could co-exist (yeah right!)
Simon says the last 8 or 9 years working on Idol have been the best of his lifeâ€¦.
“We are very buoyant about where the show is going to be this season, ” Kevin Reilly, president of FOX entertainment told reporters, ” Every year ‘Idol’ has increased its lead over the No. 2 show.”
As far as a possible replacement for Simon, FOX Chairman, Peter Price would not speculate, “We have to take our time on that, ” he said, “We have to make sure the chemistry of the judges is as good as it can be.””
Video of Cowell making announcement today after the jumpâ€¦ via @richardrushfield
Quotes from Twitter:
Quotes from Twitter:
Cowell says it would’ve been “impossible” to do both X FACTOR and IDOL.
Im confident that idol will continue to be the #1 show — Cowell.
Will the two shows work together and not detract? Cowell – I wouldnt have put x factor on if i didnt think they could coexist successfully
Simon Cowell – “I have had the best 8 or 9 years of my life doing this show” on #Idol
Cowell says an announcement about the other X FACTOR judges will be made “fairly soon.”
“I’ve gone on record, I adore Paula. Whatever happens, I will be working w/ her in some capacity…”
IDOL will air spring 2011, SYTYCD summer 2011, X FACTOR fall 2011.
Simon Cowell: “I want to leave Idol this year bigger and better than it was before.”
I like the contestants this year, ” then joked he didn’t like them “maybe three years ago, the Taylor year”
twitterfeeds: @richardrushfield and @EWAusielloFiles @realityblurred
Check back for developments!