ITV and BBC agree not to schedule The X Factor and Strictly Come Dancing against each other

ITV

Autumn's two rival reality shows The X Factor and Strictly Come Dancing won't clash this year, it has been revealed. The top execs at both the BBC and ITV have agreed to work together to ensure that the two series won't overlap when they return this autumn on BBC One and ITV1.

In previous years the two shows have occasionally been scheduled against one another, with The X Factor winning the battle. However this year it seems as though the BBC is going to back down. "It’s neither in the interests of the viewer or the broadcaster to go head-to-head," a source said.

Speaking to the Daily Express, the insider continued: "Strictly Come Dancing will go out slightly earlier, the X Factor will go later.”

The insider added that ITV programme controller Peter Fincham and BBC boss Danny Cohen were “on song with this one”, saying: “It’s good news for viewers.”

Meanwhile ITV bosses are said to be unconcerned about the impact this year's new line up will have on the programme's ratings. "What’s interesting is that changes in the make-up of the judges’ panels is having no effect on the ratings. Britain’s Got Talent still has huge figures in the absence of Simon Cowell," an insider commented.

The insider also hinted that this year's judges could include some surprises, with the source reminding us that Simon Cowell likes to take risks. “Signing Cheryl Cole [for The X Factor USA] is not playing safe," the source said. "It’s not just the Geordie accent, Americans will want to see that she has talent in her own right.”

The X Factor 2011 audition panel will be confirmed this week.

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