herald

Sunday 4 December 2016

X Factor reveals 'new generation' of judges - without Louis

Television

The X Factor has unveiled a "new generation" of judges after announcing that BBC Radio 1 host Nick Grimshaw and singer Rita Ora will join Simon Cowell and Cheryl Fernandez-Versini as judges in the next series.

This is the first time in the history of the show that boyband manager Louis Walsh (pictured) will not be on the panel.

The line-up has been rumoured for months, but Cowell confirmed the new panel yesterday.

"It's taken a while. But I am very happy to be able to confirm our line-up of judges for the X Factor this year," he said.

"The combination of Nick, Cheryl and Rita is going to be a lot of fun. They all bring a lot of enthusiasm and passion.

"I have a feeling I am in for a bit of a rough time but sometimes you have to embrace the craziness and now, with luck, we hope to find a star," he added.

Ora, who had a stint as a guest judge on the show three years ago, has had hits including How We Do (Party) and R.I.P. but has been seen more recently as a judge on rival BBC show The Voice.

"This is a journey I can't wait to embark on to find some talented singers. It's the new generation taking over," she said.

It is not the first time Cowell has poached talent from his BBC rivals, notably taking Alesha Dixon from Strictly Come Dancing to Britain's Got Talent.

flagship

However, it is expected Grimshaw will stay at the helm of Radio 1's flagship show while working on X Factor.

He took over from Chris Moyles three years ago but has lost hundreds of thousands of listeners as the station has attempted to attract a younger audience.

"I love X Factor and have watched the series religiously since it started," Nick said.

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