'The X Factor': Enrique Iglesias, Pharrell Williams Join Judges as Guest Mentors

For the "judges homes" portion of the contest, L.A. Reid recruited Rihanna, Nicole Scherzinger has been paired with Latin heartthrob Iglesias, while Paula Abdul partners with N.E.R.D.'s Williams. As for Simon Cowell? His star partner was grounded -- literally.
Ray Mickshaw / FOX
Nicole Scherzinger and Enrique Iglesias

Thursday night’s X Factor (Fox, 8 p.m.) will be a rain date for all, as the show -- preempted on Wednesday for the start of baseball’s American League Championship Series -- finally puts the contestants in front of the judges for some one-on-one mentoring.

It was revealed yesterday that L.A. Reid, who's guiding the boys, has teamed up with Rihanna for his portion of the contest, echoing what Simon Cowell told The Hollywood Reporter over the summer, that Reid was "expected to bring in big stars." Now, THR has confirmed two more “judges homes” pairings: Nicole Scherzinger, who’s tasked with mentoring the “over 30s,” has partnered with Enrique Iglesias, while Paula Abdul, who mentors the groups, has been matched with Pharrell Williams

STORY: 'The X Factor' Vs. 'American Idol:' Who's Leading the Battle for Talent Show Supremacy (Analysis)

Originally scheduled for October 12, 13 and 18, the first episode will now air on October 13 and the second on the 16th. The Oct. 18 episode remains unchanged.

As for Simon Cowell’s mentoring partner, it was supposed to be Mariah Carey helping him sort through the girls, but due to September’s Hurricane Irene, which grounded all flights out of New York at the time, the multi-platinum pop star was not able to film her portion.

STORY: Is 'X Factor' Priming Chris Rene to Win by Giving Him More Screen Time?

Although The X Factor is aligned with Sony Music, the company ponying up a $5 million recording contract, all of the guest mentors are signed to Universal Music Group label -- Rihanna (and Carey) to Island Def Jam, Iglesias and Williams to Interscope -- a curious move considering the two music giants are fierce competitors, but not all that surprising considering UMG, sales leader for 2010, lays claim to more than 31% of the music market. 

See more exclusive photos from the episode below:






















Twitter: @shirleyhalperin