There have been lots of rumors about which judges from "The X Factor" U.K. are staying and which are leaving the show in 2013. In the issue dated Feb. 28, 2013, The Sun is reporting that Tulisa Contostavlos has definitely been fired; she allegedly was told by "X Factor" bosses this week. Meanwhile, the Daily Mirror is reporting in the issue dated Feb. 28, 2013, that Gary Barlow is likely to renew his contract because he has ended his feud with "The X Factor" executive producer Simon Cowell.
Contostavlos is usually quick to go on Twitter to say if tabloid reports about her are false, but she has been conspicuously silent over recent tabloid reports that she has been fired from "The X Factor." British tabloids had been reporting for several months that she would be leaving the show.
For now, representatives for "The X Factor" U.K. will not confirm or deny changes that will be happening on the judges' panel in 2013, and will only say that decisions are being made.
An unnamed source told The Sun that Contostavlos is devastated over losing her "X Factor" job: “To say Tulisa is gutted is an understatement. She’s a bit embarrassed to be on the scrapheap when she delivered with Little Mix. She’s thrown away one of the most high-profile jobs in the industry as well as one of the best paid. But she simply wasn’t up to scratch last year and Simon Cowell had no real option."
On Feb. 27, 2013, the Daily Mirror published a very dubious story that former Spice Girls singer Melanie Brown (also known as Mel B) is in talks to replace Contostavlos, but that is highly unlikely since it's already been announced that Brown is replacing Sharon Osbourne as a judge on "America's Got Talent," whose live episodes take place during the same months that "X Factor" U.K. judges are supposed to be at auditions, boot camp and judges' houses.
The Daily Mirror erroneously reported that "America's Got Talent's" live episodes are in Los Angeles, when in fact the show relocated its live episodes to the New York City area in 2012 in order to accommodate New York-based "America's Got Talent" judge Howard Stern. Getting this basic fact wrong makes the rest of the Daily Mirror's story look not very credible.
Meanwhile, Osbourne is also rumored to be in talks to replace Contostavlos on "The X Factor" U.K., but as I exclusively reported, Osbourne is also being considered to replace Britney Spears on "The X Factor" U.S.
Sources say that several members of Osbourne's family don't want her to take "The X Factor" U.K. job because they want her to remain primarily based in Los Angeles, where she also co-hosts the weekday chat show "The Talk."
According to The Sun, Robbie Williams is being sought after to become a judge on "The X Factor" U.K., but he may not take the job because of his busy schedule. Williams is an on-again/off-again member of Take That, whose leader/chief songwriter is Barlow. In 2011, Williams was a guest mentor on "The X Factor" U.K. (he was paired with Barlow), and Williams has been a guest performer on the show several times.
However, Williams has a solo tour that is scheduled during "The X Factor" U.K.'s 2013 auditions that are supposed to take place in front of the judges. It's possible that if Williams becomes a judge on the show, the audition dates could be rescheduled, just as the show rescheduled audition dates in 2011 to accommodate Barlow when he was touring with Take That. If "The X Factor" U.K. can't reschedule the audition dates, perhaps the show will have guest judges filling in until Williams is free to permanently join the judges' panel. But that's if Williams takes the job.
Williams told the BBC about the possibility of joining "The X Factor" U.K. judging panel: “It would be great if Gary was on it and I was on it. The audition dates run through my tour, so I just don’t know if I can do it.”
Barlow has announced that there will be a new Take That album released in late 2013 and a Take That tour in 2014. Those plans may or may not affect his decision to continue be an "X Factor" U.K. judge. The tour could take place during months where he is not required to do any "X Factor" episodes.
Barlow and Contostavlos joined "The X Factor" U.K. in May 2011. Nicole Scherzinger joined the show's judging panel in June 2012, and she is likely to renew her "X Factor" contract in 2013. Louis Walsh has been an "X Factor" U.K. judge since the show debuted in 2004. And even though every year there are rumors that Walsh is going to be fired (and it did happen in 2007 when he was briefly fired for a few episodes and then rehired), he has remained on the show, year after year. Tabloids are speculating that if Williams or another male music star ends up becoming an "X Factor" judge then Walsh is likely to be fired.
The entire "X Factor" U.K. judging panel for 2013 should be officially announced by May.