Cowell: I'll pull the plug on US X Factor if it's not great

Cowell: I'll pull the plug on US X Factor if it's not great

Simon Cowell has said he will pull the plug on US X Factor if he is unable to find the right calibre of star.

He said it was “all or nothing” for the new show, which launches later this year co-hosted by Welsh presenter Steve Jones.

And if the show is not up to scratch, the millionaire programme executive said he will have no hesitation in wielding the axe.

He said: “I’ve made a decision: you know what, its all or nothing. If we can’t find a star or if the show’s useless, we’ll just call it a day.

“It’s got to be great, it’s got to be fun, you’ve got to find a star, otherwise truthfully it’s all been a waste of time – so no pressure.”

The line-up for the show was finalised over the weekend, with Paula Abdul completing the judging panel alongside Cowell, Cheryl Cole and LA Reid.

Cowell admitted that Jones’s involvement was decided at the “last second”.

“Stuff happens,” he said.

In March Dermot O’Leary revealed he was out of the running for the US presenting role, saying show bosses wanted to take on an American. He said at the time: “At least I was the only Brit to make the shortlist.”

Cowell’s declaration that Jones’ hiring was a “last-second decision” also seems at odds with his official statement over the weekend in which he said: “I have always wanted Steve to work with us. I think he is a real star.”

Jones – who found fame as a host of Channel 4’s T4 strand – will present the show alongside ex-Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger.

Cowell, speaking at an X Factor audition in Los Angeles yesterday, said he was “nervous” that the acts could be “terrible”.

He said: “When I ask the producers if they’re any good or not, I’m getting various responses – ’Errr, yes, I think so’ to ’Wonderful’ – but they’re nervous as well.”

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