ITV Renews Simon Cowell's 'X Factor,' 'Britain's Got Talent' for Three Years
UPDATED: The talent shows will remain on the U.K. network through 2016 amid reports of a clause that would allow Cowell to appear on both, opening a door for his possible "X Factor" U.K. return.
LONDON – U.K. TV network giant ITV on Friday unveiled a three-year deal that will keep Simon Cowell hit shows The X Factor and Britain's Got Talent on the air.
The talent shows will remain on the network through 2016. The deal was completed late in the week amid reports of a new clause that continues to require Cowell to appear on one of the shows, but also allows him to appear on both shows, opening a door for his possible return to The X Factor in the U.K. in the future.
Cowell currently is a judge on Britain's Got Talent and the U.S. version of The X Factor, which has seen weaker ratings, leading some to raise questions about its future. He has said his U.S. role keeps him from appearing on-air on both U.K. shows.
Financial terms of the deal for two of Britain’s biggest TV formats weren't released, but reports had predicted a deal would be worth around $240 million (150 million pounds).
The agreement between ITV and production firms Syco Entertainment, a joint venture of Cowell and Sony, and FremantleMedia UK, means that
Britain’s Got Talent will return to ITV in the spring for an eighth season. The 11th season of The X Factor will follow next fall.
ITV2 will also continue to air sister shows The Xtra Factor and Britain’s Got More Talent.
"I am thrilled that we have extended our deal with ITV for Britain's Got Talent and The X Factor," said Cowell. "They have been fantastic partners, and we have some exciting new plans to take the shows to the next level." He didn't immediately provide details.
Said Peter Fincham, ITV director of television: “Britain's Got Talent and The X Factor are two of the most popular and most talked about shows on TV. They set the gold standard for entertainment production. We’re pleased to announce this deal, which will see them continue to be an important part of ITV's schedule."
And Charles Garland, CEO of Syco, added: "This new agreement is testament to both the strength of our television brands and the quality of our partnership with ITV and Fremantle."