ITV may have burst the dreams of millions of music fans, with reports that ‘The X Factor’ will not be facing the axe despite its low ratings last year. Simon Cowell’s show seems to have earned a stay of execution from the network’s bosses, and will continue until at least 2017.
Recent reports had suggested that, with ‘The Voice’ moving from BBC to ITV next year, ‘The X Factor’ would be rested in 2017. “[ITV] will rest ‘The X Factor’ for 2017 because there is no way they can run two singing contests and ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ in the same year, they cannot do it,” a source had told the Daily Mail earlier this week, implying that the network would effectively use it as insurance.
Simon Cowell's 'X Factor' has reportedly been under the threat of being axed by ITV
“Particularly because ‘The X Factor’ contract is coming to an end and it has been a disaster. If ‘The Voice’ is a success it's unlikely they will bring back ‘The X Factor’ but if ‘The Voice’ is a disaster they have ‘The X Factor’.”
Last year’s final, which saw Louisa Johnson edge out Reggie & Bollie, drew the lowest audience for a final in the show’s 12 year history. The accompanying Christmas single, traditionally a chart topper in the festive season, only reached Number 9, a cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘Forever Young’.
However, a spokesman for Cowell’s record label Syco told the Mirror late on Thursday (February 4th): “X Factor will not be rested in 2017.”
Cowell has been in a waspish mood recently regarding the future of ‘The X Factor’, the show he created and has licensed all around the world. Last week, he hit back at the show’s former presenter Dermot O’Leary, who suggested that ‘The X Factor’ should be mothballed for a short time.
He and his team are currently in negotiations for extending the contracts of both ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ and ‘The X Factor’, which run out in late 2016. According to another insider, both shows come as a “joint package” as far as Cowell is concerned.
“Essentially you can't have ‘BGT ‘on ITV without ‘The X Factor’,” the source said. “One comes with the other and Simon wouldn't split them up. ‘Britain's Got Talent’ is the number one show on ITV ratings-wise and ‘X Factor’ is a huge hit with advertisers, not to mention the fact that a peak of nearly 10million watched the final last year.”