Fellow former guest judge Rita Ora’s name has been hinted at as well as another familiar X Factor face Dannii Minogue.
But Simon Cowell is nothing if not full of surprises. So an unexpected curve ball wouldn’t actually be that… well, unexpected.
Cowell could look within his own camp – whip a One Direction lad out for a few months. Or a Little Mix member? It would be sure to rally a young audience around the show. Or go big and call upon someone like Katy Perry who regularly guest stars on the show?
The X Factor took things up a notch for the 10th series last year. Format changes included the new chairs stage at Bootcamp, with acts put through, pulled back out, put through again. Cowell’s other show Britain’s Got Talent has just added in the new Golden Buzzer format, adding an extra level of excitement as acts can be sent straight through to live shows. Cowell himself has tweeted that he’s had a great idea to change the format of his shows (he didn’t say what, of course), so a new face on the panel could be the least of the changes.
Whatever happens, Cowell is back and he’ll want viewing figure glory.
Emma is RadioTimes.com’s resident reality TV expert and is most likely to be found chasing Simon Cowell down the street, cancelling her social life to keep up with the latest batch of sob stories and trying to get selfies with celebrities. Emma is a chat show addict and quotes Friends more than is probably healthy.