X Factor might not return until 2022, Dermot O’Leary says

The singing contest took a year off in 2020 for the first time since it began in 2003.

Dermot O'Leary on The X Factor 2017

2020 was the first year without a new series of The X Factor since the talent contest began in 2003, and it looks like we might have to wait another year before Simon Cowell’s show returns.

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Presenter Dermot O’Leary has revealed that the series “definitely won’t be back next year”, instead suggesting that a series in 2022 was more likely.

The series had always been set to take a break this year while producers rethought the direction of the show after years of falling ratings and the disappointing performance of spin-off versions The X Factor: Celebrity and The X Factor: The Band in 2019.

And it looks as if the effect of the coronavirus pandemic has meant that break will be longer than initially planned.

Speaking on yesterday’s episode of Sunday Brunch, O’Leary said he didn’t know for sure what the future held for the show, explaining, “If I knew, I’d tell you, because I’d be happy. I’ve no idea!”

He added, “It’s got the turning circle of a car ferry. There’s a lot of planning that goes into it. It definitely won’t be next year, so it will probably be back in 2022.”

O’Leary, who took over from Kate Thornton as presenter in 2007 and has hosted all but one of the series since, further revealed that he had been keeping in touch with Cowell.

Despite no return for The X Factor next year, though, we’ll be seeing plenty of the presenter on our screens – after he was announced as a new member of the regular This Morning presenting team alongside Alison Hammond.

The pair will take over the Friday slot on the popular breakfast programme, replacing long-running duo Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford.

RadioTimes.com has reached out to Syco for comment.

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