Fox has confirmed that former Destiny’s Child member Kelly Rowland and Latin singer Paulina Rubio will be the new “X Factor” judges for season three, joining executive producer-judge Simon Cowell and his fellow lone surviving panelist from last season, pop singer Demi Lovato.
“It’s taken more than a decade but I’m delighted to finally be on a panel with three girls (I think!),” said Cowell in a statement. “Paulina and Kelly both have great taste and massive experience in the music industry and together with Demi, this is going to be a fun panel. It just feels like the time to do something different.”
The newbies come with prior experience judging a music competition shows. Rowland was a judge on the UK version of “X Factor,” while Rubio judged the Mexican version of “The Voice.”
“I am very excited to be reuniting with Simon Cowell and The X Factor family,” Rowland stated. “It feels great to be able to take this journey here at home in the states!”
The new panel targets a diverse collection of music fans of varying ages: Lovato (age 20) is a current pop singer, Rowland (32) leans toward R&B, and Rubio (41) sings Latin dance music. And of course Cowell (53) lends his experience as a music producer and talent spotter.
The deals were reportedly signed Monday afternoon, just time for today’s official launch of production for season three.
With “X Factor” on lock, Fox will turn its attention toward the judging panel of “American Idol.” In recent weeks, panelists Randy Jackson and Nicki Minaj have said they won’t be back, Keith Urban says he’d like to return, and Mariah Carey has said anything. NBC’s rival “The Voice” firmed up its judges panel for the next two cycles last week.
Cowell, meanwhile, took a moment over the weekend to reminiscence about his former time at “Idol.” “Randy leaving Idol made me remember that Paula, Randy, me and Ryan had the best time,” Cowell tweeted. “I miss them.”