Cheryl Cole out as 'The X Factor' judge, Nicole Scherzinger to replace her
Cheryl Cole will not serve as a judge on the U.S. version of "The X Factor" after all and will be replaced by Nicole Scherzinger, a member of the group the Pussycat Dolls who was previously announced as one of the FOX singing contest series' hosts.
"FOX, FremantleMedia North America and Syco TV today confirm Nicole Scherzinger will be replacing Cheryl Cole on the judging panel of 'The X Factor,'" read a statement from the network and the production companies, which was obtained by OnTheRedCarpet.com.
"Nicole will join Simon Cowell, L.A. Reid and Paula Abdul on their search across America to find the next global superstar or group to win the life-changing $5 million dollar recording deal," the statement said. "Nicole has previously joined Simon Cowell as a guest judge on 'The X Factor' for the UK version of the show in 2010. Steve Jones will act as sole host of 'The X Factor.'"
The reason for Cole's departure were not detailed. The Hollywood Reporter said Cole "lacked chemistry with the other judges, particularly Paula Abdul" and quoted a source as saying: "There was no spark. It was nobody's fault. It just didn't work."
Fremantle will still pay Cole the reported $1.5 million she was owed under her contract, the trade publication said. FOX, FremantleMedia North America and Syco TV have not confirmed the reports.
Cole, a 27-year-old British pop singer who rose to fame as a member of the group Girls Aloud, sat alongside Cowell on the judging panel of the UK version of "The X Factor" for three years. "The X Factor" has been the United Kingdom's top-rated program for the last seven years.
Cole had already served as a judge for several U.S. auditions on the show, which is set to debut on FOX in the fall.
Anotherl reason has been cited for Cole's departure - a fear that audiences may not be able to understand her northeastern English accent. This has not been confirmed.
Abdul had Tweeted on May 8 that despite concerns by some viewers, she is able to understand Cole despite her accent, adding: "She's a delight, lovely & sweet. what accent?"
"Gotta tell you about Cheryl- 'The Fierce' is STRONG w/ this one! :)" Abdul said. "She's lovely! xoP"