It used to be the reason you’d stay in on a Saturday night – The X Factor‘s annual search for the next singing sensation once drew in a staggering audience of 17.7 million and provided endless water cooler moments up and down the country.
However, The X Factor’s gleaming star has most definitely waned in more recent years – with its new ‘The X Factor: Celebrity’ sister spin-off seeing only two million of us regularly tuning in.
With such a steep decline in ratings, it’s little wonder that Cowell and co will be trying something completely different this year for The X Factor, having tweaked the format twice in order to restore the show to its former glory.
But will the X Factor we all know and used to love ever return? Here’s all you need to know.
Will there be another series of the ‘normal’ X Factor?
For 2019? No.
Cowell has shelved The X Factor’s original search-for-a-star format in favour for two shorter spin-offs; The X Factor: Celebrity, who crowned Megan McKenna as its first winner, and The X Factor: The Band – which sees Cowell and Nicole Scherzinger search for the next big band that could rival the likes of K-Pop superstars BTS.
But the civilian X Factor that we know has been shelved until 2020, according to Cowell, and will be back after the hiatus with a brand new look.
“Next year the main X Factor show will change again and we’ve got something very, very exciting, that I can’t get into yet, but it’s a four-year plan,” he said of the original show.
“ITV wanted the regular X Factor and, as I’ve told you before, we’ve been offered a new five-year deal on both formats, which we haven’t agreed to yet.
“All we’re trying to do is upgrade and glamorise the show.”
However, the latest reports suggest that ITV have only offered Cowell one more year on The X Factor after disappointing ratings.
“Simon has been in talks with ITV for some time and bosses there are keen to cement a new deal,” an insider told The Sun.
“There has been interest from streaming sites and other stations but terrestrial television has always been the most natural fit.
“The X Factor clearly is at a crossroads. A one-year deal with an option of further series seemed a sensible conclusion.”
However, X Factor: All Stars may instead air in 2020, after the show was cancelled in favour for X Factor: The Band earlier this year.
RadioTimes.com has contacted ITV for comment.
The X Factor returns to ITV later this year.