Simon Cowell: Why I'm Letting 12-Year-Olds Do X-Factor

Entertainment Feb. 7, 2011 AT 11:36AM
Simon Cowell: Why I'm Letting 12-Year-Olds Do X-Factor Credit: Ken McKay/Rex/Rex USA

He's back...almost!

Fans who've missed Simon Cowell since he left American Idol last year got a glimpse of the curmudgeonly judge during a Super Bowl spot promoting his new singing competition, The X Factor. Now additional details are emerging about the upcoming Fox show, which unlike Idol, will be open to anyone over age 12.

PHOTOS: See Simon and other judges before they were on Idol

"I like the idea that a 12-year-old on this show can compete with an older singer and a singing group," Cowell told UsMagazine.com in a statement. "I've never believed there should be a cut-off age for talent, and we are going to put our money where our mouths are with the $5 million recording contract."

On Monday, Cowell ( along with Sony Music, FremantleMedia North America, and the network) put out a call for auditions to begin in L.A. March 27. Bands and solo contestants are encouraged to audition.

PHOTOS: See which Idol contestants have wed or had babies

Another deviation from Idol? Would-be performers will audition not only in front of panel of judges but also an audience of thousands.

The X Factor debuted in the U.K. in 2004 and has been the number one program there for its entire seven-year run.

VIDEO: Stars reveal who they wanted to see judge Idol

Adds Cowell: "I'm doing this show in America because I genuinely believe we can find a superstar."

Interested musicians can sign up at Fox.com/thexfactor.

How we use your email
X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Us Weekly and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

comments powered by Disqus

ADVERTISEMENT