X Factor chiefs tell Si: WE WANT MR NASTY BACK
X FACTOR bosses have told Simon Cowell he’s not mean enough to contestants any more.
They reckon he has grown “too soft” and want to see him toughen up.
At a secret meeting, they warned him: “You’re too nice – we need you to bring Mr Nasty back!”
Producers are convinced viewers love to see Simon, 58, being mean to wannabes.
He shot to fame in 2001 as a judge on Pop Idol thanks to his acid tongue and no-nonsense approach.
The persona earned him his “Mr Nasty” nickname and helped him become a TV sensation.
Simon soon became a judge on
The X Factor and Britain’s Got
Talent. He went on to similar success on American Idol and America’s Got Talent.
He was known to millions of fans around the world for being the meanest man on television.
But in recent years he has become nicer and rarely doles out tough criticism.
Pals of Simon, right, say he has grown softer since becoming a dad to son Eric in 2014.
But X Factor producers are worried his being too nice is to blame for viewers switching off or tuning in to rival show Strictly.
At the meeting with executives the rest of this year’s series was discussed in detail. Bosses are determined to make it one of the best years yet. Our insider said: “Simon was politely told to get tougher. Producers know he is open to ideas and wants to make the best show possible.
“He took on board what they’d said, so viewers can expect him to be the Simon they know and love for the rest of this series.”
Simon filmed his Judges’ Houses selection last week alongside pal and former judge Cheryl Tweedy.
They headed to Nice in the south of France to whittle down his category ahead of the live shows.
X Factor insiders reckon viewers will now see a tougher Simon as this year’s series nears the later stages.
A source said: “Simon is determined for this year’s winner to be seen as a credible artist. So it’s the perfect time for him to get tough. If Simon is dishing out some home truths, the contestants will have to up their game and work even harder.”
An X Factor spokesperson claimed: “This story is complete rubbish.”