The X Factor 2018 will see more 'characters' in this year's auditions, it's been revealed.
Simon Cowell described the new series as 'less tense' than last year's, describing the 2017 run as a "slog".
Auditions, back to being held in front of a live arena audience once again, saw more of the ‘characters’ we've seen in earlier series.
Simon said: "It’s definitely not as tense as last year. Last year was hard work, it ended well but god it was a slog, I tell you.
"We need the characters to keep it entertaining."
He added: "I’ve had more fun during auditions than I have had in years! The new panel have been great and I love doing auditions in front of an audience. I just can’t understand why we never seem to do that, it’s the weirdest thing.
"You sit in a small room and someone’s great and literally nothing happens. In the arena when it’s a good audition they go nuts and that’s what they want.
"I think the show has got to find a star, you hope to find someone who sells records but the show has to be fun as well."
Joining Simon on this year's panel are three new judges: Husband and wife team Robbie Williams and Ayda Williams plus One Direction's Louis Tomlinson.
"It was one of those years that I knew we had to make a change, for sure," Simon said of the new line up. "It just happens, particularly on this show.
"What I love about Louis, Robbie and Ayda is that they are all fans of the show in their own way, and of course Louis started out on the show. Robbie’s been a huge part of the show over the years, it’s how we became friends, and Ayda has been a revelation, I mean, seriously, she’s been brilliant."
The X Factor returns Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 September at 8PM on ITV.