Fox's The X Factor may have had a tepid start, but Simon Cowell and the rest of the producers are working hard to revamp the series for season 2 – and Britney Spears may be the first step towards doing just that.
According to TMZ, Spears is currently closing a deal to join The X Factor as a judge for season 2. The major terms are reportedly locked down, with Simon Cowell saying that an announcement regarding a new judge (not mentioning Spears) may be made within a week. Spears' salary is reported to be $15 million per season.
And as for Cowell's thoughts on Spears? He had this to say about the pop singer while talking to TMZ this past Tuesday:
I would love to have her on the show. I think she would be a fascinating person to sit next to.
Rumors of new judges joining The X Factor have been rampant since Cowell decided to axe Paula Abdul, Nicole Scherzinger and host Steve Jones following the series' first season. UK darling Cheryl Cole was the first judge to get the boot on the series after being removed early on in the auditions. Cole was eventually replaced by Scherzinger. In February 2012, it was reported that Whitney Houston had been approached to join the series. Unfortunately, the music icon passed away before any further negations were able to take place.
With Spears joining Cowell and CEO of Epic Records L.A. Reid on the judging panel, America's version of The X Factor is taking the steps the rework the series for a second season – but will it work?
For those who have seen both the UK and US versions of The X Factor, it was clear from the start that the same model used to create the smash hit across the pond wasn't going to be as strong in America - even with Cowell on board.
From the choice of Steve Jones as host (who happens to be one the least well-known UK host that Cowell could have chosen), to the attempt at rekindling some American Idol sparks with Paula Abdul (and The X Factor UK sparks with Cheryl Cole), Cowell's first season of The X Factor simply wasn't up to par with what viewers typically expect from him.
In the UK, many would say the best judging panel of The X Factor was with Simon Cowell, Sharon Osborne and Louis Walsh (though Cheryl Cole was just as great). While Osborne and Walsh certainly have enough credibility to be on the panel (you can thank Walsh for the Irish sensations Jedwood), it was the combination of their personalities that really made the series entertaining to watch.
Besides continuously driving towards the goal of finding that season's winner, Cowell Osborne and Walsh would fight back and forth, annoy each other, mock each other – all of which was conveyed onscreen in The X Factor's main show and sister series, The Xtra Factor.
Unfortunately, many times the translation of television series for American audiences have the tendency to be over-produced when compared to their source, which seemingly removes many of the elements that make the original so successful.
But with The X Factor currently being reworked, perhaps many of the elements that didn't work for the series in the first season will be solved. Because while The X Factor didn't do so well initially, the core premise of the series does make for more compelling television than American Idol.
Expect to hear more about The X Factor season 2 in the coming weeks
Follow Anthony on Twitter @anthonyocasio
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