'The X Factor' U.K. Return Set for Mid-August

Simon Cowell
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"I considered it, but then I thought, 'I don't think the after would be as good as the before.' I'd let her stay for a few hours, but then it would have to be goodnight."

The Simon Cowell music competition show on ITV1 will kick off on Aug. 18.

LONDON - U.K. commercial broadcaster ITV on Wednesday announced that Simon Cowell's The X Factor would return in mid-August.

"Confirmed: It's back! @TheXFactor starts 8pm Saturday 18 August on @ITV1 #thexfactor #xfactor" an ITV Twitter feed said Wednesday afternoon.

It will air 8pm-9:15pm. This will be the singing competition's ninth season in the U.K.

The judges for the latest season are Pussycat Dolls star Nicole Scherzinger, who replaced Kelly Rowland, and the returning Gary Barlow, Tulisa Contostavlos and Louis Walsh.

This season's auditions, which have been shot in recent months, will feature Spice Girls Geri Halliwell and Mel B, Anastacia, Rita Ora and Leona Lewis as guest judges.

ITV hasn't unveiled other plans for the new season, but recent buzz has suggested that competitors could sing duets with music legends such as Amy Winehouse and Michael Jackson via 3D holograms from Digital Domain.

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Twitter: @georgszalai