Simon Cowell is hoping to sit alongside Mariah Carey's ex-husband Tommy Mottola when he launches his British talent show The X Factor in the U.S.
The tough-talking music mogul quit his role as a judge on American Idol this week (begs11Jan09) to concentrate on taking his U.K. singing contest Stateside.
And he already has several stars in mind to join him on the show's judging panel - including Mottola, Paula Abdul, and British singer Cheryl Cole.
Cowell tells New York Post gossip column PageSix, "On X Factor, you get to mentor the artists, so you have more of a role. It's frustrating sometimes when you sit there and you haven't been able to change their songs, or how they perform, or what they wear... It's pointless hiring judges who don't know anything about the music business. I'll probably go and find someone who did what I did for a living. I was an A&R guy for 20 years. I thought Tommy Mottola would be a good choice. He was the guy who was the head of Sony - he guided Mariah - very flamboyant, knows what he's talking about."
Cowell admits he is also lining up two other experts he has worked with before - Abdul had a judging role on American Idol, and Cole currently mentors acts on The X Factor.
He adds, "I've been talking to Paula for a long time. It was always my intention in one way or another to carry on working with her... I think (Cheryl) would be great over here - Cheryl's a star."