THE X Factor is set for a ‘shock return to Channel 5’ after Simon Cowell ‘signed a big money deal’ it has been claimed.
It was reported last month that Simon, 62, was said to be planning to revive the singing competition next year after a five-year absence.
Now the Daily Star reports the revival will take place on Channel 5 after Simon struck a “big money deal” with the network.
A TV insider told the publication: “As soon as X-Factor was up for grabs, there was interest from a number of the networks.
“X-Factor is one of the most iconic shows in TV history, so it’s no surprise lots of channels were keen. The production company had their pick.
“After a lot of meetings, execs decided to go with Channel 5.”
Meanwhile another source told the outlet that Channel 5 bosses were thrilled to give the show a “fresh start”.
They added: “There’s a good chance it will become Channel 5’s most-watched show.”
The news comes after the Daily Star previously reported on Simon’s plans to bring The X Factor back.
It last appeared on screen on ITV in 2018 after 15 seasons.
Last year, Simon was said to have AXED The X Factor for good after 17 years on screen.
A representative for ITV confirmed at the time: “There are no current plans for the next series of The X Factor at this stage.”
Simon went on to draw all his focus on a new big-money gameshow called Walk The Line, as well as the latest series of Britain’s Got Talent.
A show insider said of X Factor: “Globally, it is still a phenomenon and rakes in millions every year. But in the UK, there is no question it has become slightly stale.
“Simon remains at the top of his game and knows how to make a hit. He owns the rights to the show, and it’s his call — not ITV’s — whether or not he drops it.
“Clearly the last thing he wants is for X Factor to fizzle out with a whimper and become a bit of a joke — especially in contrast to the show in its pomp.
“It is still on the back-burner and there’s the option to return it in 2023.”
The Sun Online has contacted a representative for The X Factor for comment.