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Simon Cowell to have 'X Factor' meeting over show's future

Simon Cowell will return to the UK in January for a meeting over The X Factor's future.

The music mogul will decide how to save the flagging show for 2013 after the final last weekend scored the lowest ratings since 2006.

Simon Cowell
Demi Lovato and Simon Cowell appear on TBS's 'Conan' where they talk about working together as judges on the hit reality show 'The X Factor'
USA - 17.09.12
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X Factor executive producer Richard Holloway told The Guardian: "There is not one element we will not be looking at carefully - from judges and start times to auditions and glitzy productions."

He hinted that Cowell might be a part of the judging panel again, saying: "I'd love him to come back. He's the best judge in the world, Never say never! If we can find a way to reintroduce him, we will. But it is impossible for him to be in two places."

Cowell is currently on the judging panel for the second season of The X Factor USA, which ends this weekend, but the two shows both go out in the autumn.

The producer continued: "It's our tenth anniversary in 2013, and we want it to be amazing.

"It's about who the judges will be next year. Do we reformat the show? Do we introduce a new element?"

X Factor winner James Arthur arrives to sign copies of his new single Impossible in HMV at the Cleveland Centre, Middlesbrough.
Picture date: Wednesday December 12, 2012. Arthur's track was released on Sunday evening, immediately after he was crowned X Factor winner. Photo credit should read: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire

© PA Images

[This year's winner James Arthur]

Critics have cited the timing of the TV show as one of the main problems the reality programme has faced this year. In an attempt to avoid a head-to-head ratings war with BBC One's Strictly Come Dancing, which airs at 6.30pm, ITV moved The X Factor to the later slot of 8pm.

Holloway said that he thinks ITV made a big mistake with the new time.

"This is a bit of a raw nerve," he told the newspaper. "The X Factor is a family show. If I could pick my start time, it would be 7pm on Saturday and Sunday. At the latest we should be off air at 9.30pm. It allows the kids to stay up, and older ones to watch and then go out and drink; 10pm is too late and our larger shows are coming off air at 10.30pm."

Strictly Come Dancing: Dani and Vincent


The X Factor Final: James is crowned the winner.

© Ken McKay/Thames/Rex Features

In the January crisis talks, Cowell will meet with ITV's director of television Peter Fincham and the show's production team Thames/Syco.

They will decide whether the programme's overproduction has played a role in its demise, with critics suggesting that the dancers, confusing sets and special effects such as distracting flashing lighting and camera shots have made the singers' performances more impersonal.

Holloway said: "There are conflicting views. There are those who say they just want to hear and see the song, but for the vast majority this is an entertainment extravaganza and we want to make it the best. Sometimes we go too far, but as the show progressed this time we did cut back. It is a singing contest."
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