Simon Cowell preparing to axe 'The X Factor'?

Mogul says he has another TV format in development that could replace it

Dean Chalkley
Pic: Dean Chalkley
Simon Cowell has suggested that this year's series of The X Factor could be the last.

His reality pop juggernaut appeared to falter last year with ratings dipping and the new judging panel coming in for criticism. And now Cowell has apparently admitted to reconsidering the show's future, with another format in development.

The Daily Star quotes him as saying: "In a year’s time we might say, 'Right, that's the end of The X Factor. Let's start something new'."

Referring to the slide in ratings, he added: "I'd rather fall off the cliff on numbers than deteriorate slowly. We have something in development which could replace The X Factor. Most things in music, fashion or TV tend to be across a 10-year period. The great test of success is if you can transcend a decade. I believe we can do it again if we're prepared to be brave."

For the time being, Cowell has backed the current judging line-up of Gary Barlow, Kelly Rowland, Louis Walsh and Tulisa Contostavlos to return for a second year. And ITV spokesperson said: "It is the UK's most popular entertainment show and we're looking forward to another great series."

Meanwhile, Cowell returns to the UK screens this Saturday (March 24) with Britain's Got Talent, which has prompted criticism by going head-to-head with BBC One's The Voice.

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