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The X Factor may not return next year, says ITV boss

The X Factor may not return in 2021, the boss of ITV has said.


2020 will be the first in more than 15 years without a series of the hit singing show.

Following Celebrity and Band spin-offs last year, it was confirmed earlier this year that the format would be rested for 2020.

Appearing at a (virtual) Edinburgh TV Festival, ITV boss Kevin Lygo has said that he was “sure” The X Factor would come back but it may not be in the near future.

Asked if the show would return in 2021, he said: “It’s not definitely returning, it might return.”

Lygo went on: “It was our most successful entertainment show for the best part of a decade and you need to be wary of changes, we all think there were too many changes towards the end of the run.

“I’m sure X Factor will be back at some stage, it’s really when is the right moment.”


Speaking about the decision to rest The X Factor earlier this year, Simon Cowell said: “I thought, since it is 2020, a new decade, we have to rest it for a year.

“We have to come back with a show that is relevant, different, a show that takes into account all the different things kids are watching and being influenced by.”

Simon also shared news on two programmes he was working on, teasing: “As well as the evolution of The X Factor, I’ve got two new talent shows we’re launching in the next 12 months.

“One in particular I do think is our best one yet.”

While The X Factor’s return isn’t clear, in 2019 ITV previously announced a new five year deal to keep its sister show BGT on air until at least 2024.


Kevin Lygo, ITV’s Director of Television added: “We are delighted to have secured Simon for another five years with ITV.

“His track record speaks for itself. He creates shows that bring the nation together, celebrating the talent and diversity of modern Britain and giving ordinary people with extraordinary talent the chance to find fame.”