As The X Factor USA prepares for its third season on FOX, series creator and head judge Simon Cowell reflected on his decision to hire global superstar Britney Spears as a judge/mentor.
In an exclusive interview with Ellen DeGeneres on her talk show that will air on September 10, the music mogul said, “I kind of booked someone who couldn’t talk, which is a bit of a problem when you want someone to judge.”
"I think if I’m being honest with you, Ellen, there was a time I think everyone was trying to up themselves in terms of who could find the biggest known star to be on a panel,” said Cowell. “And in terms of a pop singer? Jennifer Lopez and the other one on The Voice… Christina Aguilera. And we said, ‘We’ll take Britney.’ She was fine, but I think she found it very uncomfortable.”
Another X Factor USA crewmember that could vouch for Cowell’s statements is former Cheetah Girls star and X Factor USA backstage correspondent Adrienne Bailon.
“I’ve worked with her on X Factor and I’m not going to lie to you guys. She could not hold a conversation,” Bailon told Digital Spy. “They had someone feeding lines to her on what she was supposed to say!”
Spears left the FOX singing competition after the second season finale to focus on her music. However, The Huffington Post reported that Spears quit the show before she could suffer the same fates as former judges Paula Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger, who were fired at the end of the first season.
The X Factor USA will return for its third season with Cowell, returning judge Demi Lovato and new judges Kelly Rowland and Paulina Rubio this Wednesday night on FOX!