One of the main people responsible for the continued success of American Idol is following in Paul Abdul’s footsteps at the conclusion of this season, according to the television section of After several weeks of speculation, Simon Cowell has announced that he did not renew his contract with the hit FOX show, so that he will be free to develop the American version of the popular British hit The X Factor. The similarly-themed singing competition is scheduled to premiere during the fall 2011 season.

Part of the reason there was such a delay in the official announcement was because the FOX network didn’t have an agreement with the show’s producers until yesterday morning, Cowell told TV Critics’ Association (TCA) reporters yesterday afternoon. Cowell also confirmed to the reporters that he will be judging and executive producing the show.

FOX’s President of Alternative Entertainment Mike Darnell added that the network is, of course, happy to be continuing a successful relationship with Cowell. “The X Factor has been a massive success around the world, and we can’t wait to bring it to the U.S. in 2011,” he added.

While Cowell officially signed his contract for The X Factor at the end of the conference, there is no news yet on American Idol’s future, and how much longer the series will last after his departure. “Our expectation is that ‘Idol’ will go on for many, many, many more seasons,” FOX chairman Peter Rice did say.

Written by: Karen Benardello

Simon Cowell Leaving American Idol
Simon Cowell Leaving American Idol

By Karen Benardello

As a graduate of LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic, Karen Benardello serves as ShockYa's Senior Movies & Television Editor. Her duties include interviewing filmmakers and musicians, and scribing movie, television and music reviews and news articles. As a New York City-area based journalist, she's a member of the guilds, New York Film Critics Online and the Women Film Critics Circle.

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