Nicole Scherzinger, former lead singer of The Pussycat Dolls, and Sharon Osbourne will return to X-Factor U.K. this year in what is shaping up to be a ratings-boosting 2016. The two, along with manager Louis Walsh, will replace Rita Ora, Cheryl Fernandez-Versini and Nick Grimshaw for the show’s 13th season, which had a ratings nosedive in last season’s finale although Adele, One Direction and Coldplay performed.
The show, created by infamous music industry figure Simon Cowell, has spawned the likes of One Direction, Leona Lewis and Olly Murs. Dermot O’Leary will also return as an X-Factor host this upcoming season, after the show employed two hosts last year.
“I’m overjoyed about going back to the X-Factor, sitting with Lou, Lou, gorgeous Nicole and naughty Simon,” Osbourne said to Billboard. “But most of all, I can’t wait to meet [Cowell’s] baby Eric.” Osbourne was an original judge on X-Factor for three years running, from 2004 to 2007.
Scherzinger had been a judge on the show previously in 2012 and 2013, and said, “I can’t wait to be back in the U.K. and on the show with the best judges sitting alongside me on the panel. I’m excited about discovering, mentoring and winning with an exciting new act this year. And having winning contestants in the past, Simon knows I will do it.”
Auditions for the X-Factor will commence this month (June 10) at King Power Stadium in Great Britain.
In other X-Factor news, this past April judge Cheryl Fernandez-Versini quit the show and decided to move in with her boyfriend, former contestant Liam Payne of One Direction. Fernandez-Versini joined the show back in 2008 and was still a judge on the show when Payne was a contestant.
“I had a feeling Cheryl would leave.” Cowell said to Daily Record at the time. “I also believed for a long while that her big thing was to make records. It’s a huge commitment to do one of these shows.”