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HOME > The X Factor > The X Factor (Season 1)

Simon Cowell: Tommy Mottola would be a good 'The X Factor' judge

By Christopher Rocchio, 01/16/2010 

While he's yet to announce who will be joining him on the judging panel of Fox's new American The X Factor edition, Simon Cowell appears to already have some specific names in mind.

"It's pointless hiring judges who don't know anything about the music business. I'll probably go and find someone who did what I did for a living. I was an A&R guy for 20 years," Cowell told The New York Post in a Friday report.

"I thought [music producer] Tommy Mottola would be a good choice. He was the guy who was the head of Sony -- he guided [Mariah Carey] -- very flamboyant, knows what he's talking about."

Cowell inked a deal with Fox on Monday that will end his American Idol judging role while also launching his British The X Factor reality competition series for the network in Fall 2011.

After signing the deal in front of reporters at the Television Critics Association's press tour on Monday, Cowell hinted that The X Factor may give a platform for him to reunite with Paula Abdul -- who announced last summer that she was leaving American Idol

"I've been talking to Paula for a long time. It was always my intention in one way or another to carry on working with her," he told The Post.

While Cowell added that British The X Factor judge Cheryl Cole would also "be great" for the American edition, he said the show's "got to be different from Idol."

"There are some big changes planned," he told The Post.

One of the differences between American Idol and The X Factor is that the judges also mentor contestants on The X Factor -- something he thinks will appeal to viewers and potential judges.

"On X Factor, you get to mentor the artists, so you have more of a role," he explained to The Post.

"It's frustrating sometimes when you sit there [as a judge] and you haven't been able to change their songs, or how they perform, or what they wear."

Cowell said "everyone seemed quite cool" when asked what the reaction was to his announcement that he was leaving American Idol.

"If I thought it would lead to the death of Idol, I genuinely wouldn't have done it. We are sure that Idol will continue successfully," he told The Post.

"It's a weight off my mind just to tell everybody."

Specifically, Cowell said American Idol's new fourth judge Ellen DeGeneres "saw the funny side" of his leaving.

"She was kidding around with me, saying: 'On my first day you decide to quit?' She's professional," he told The Post. "I don't think it was a total surprise."

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