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Sharon Osbourne explains why she ‘wouldn’t want to be a part of’ The X Factor again

'I didn’t really know what it does to people’s lives,’ ITV talent show’s ex-judge said

Nicole Vassell
Thursday 18 January 2024 17:13 GMT
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Sharon Osbourne opens up on decision to ditch Los Angeles and move back to UK

Sharon Osbourne has reflected on her years as a judge on The X Factor, and why she has no desire to repeat the experience.

The long-time music manager and TV personality was a mentor on the ITV singing competition from its launch in 2004 until 2007, returning for a year in 2013, before a third stint from 2016 to 2017.

Other notable judges included Simon Cowell, Louis Walsh, Cheryl, Dannii Minogue and Gary Barlow.

As one of the series’ most recognisable faces, Osbourne, 71, is likely one of the first people fans would think of when considering a possible X Factor reboot.

However, when speaking to broadcaster Jackie Brambles on Greatest Hits Radio on Wednesday (17 January), the Osbourne matriarch shared her reservations about returning to the show in the future.

“I got to meet some incredible people – Louis [Walsh] is still like my brother, Nicole [Scherzinger] and Gary Barlow – amazing people. But as far as talent shows go, and I’ve been away from it for a while, it was kind of like the Wild West.”

She continued: “You didn’t really know the importance and what it does to people’s lives and as far as I’m concerned, the whole thing needs to be changed.”

Sharon Osbourne (Getty Images)

Osbourne was the winning judge on the show’s 10th season, as Over 25s contestant Sam Bailey finished in first place.

The show provided a launchpad for several performers’ careers, including Little Mix, One Direction, Leona Lewis and Alexandra Burke.

“As well as giving people, a lot of people, opportunities with their careers it can also damage a lot of people too,” Osbourne added. “You have to be very, very careful. you’re handling people’s lives, you’ve got their future in your hands and it’s not anything to laugh at.

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“I wouldn’t want that responsibility again, there’s damage out there and I wouldn’t want to be a part of that. I don’t regret it, I learnt a lot about the responsibility of doing a show like that, and it was a great education.”

The final season of The X Factor was broadcast in 2018.

Cowell, who also created the show, has suggested that it could make a return to screens as early as 2024.

However, the return of The X Factor could raise eyebrows, as the original has been criticised for being “exploitative” and “cruel”, with former contestants Jedward, Cher Lloyd and Rebecca Ferguson all speaking out against their alleged mistreatment on and after the show.

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