X Factor: Celebrity judges and celebs speak out ahead of star-studded launch

This weekend sees the return of the mighty X Factor, but not as we know it — with famous faces taking to the daunting competition rounds.

The show is set to see some of the biggest names in music, sport, TV and social media all battle it out for a life-changing recording contract.

Fan favourites, Simon Cowell, Nicole Scherzinger, Louis Walsh and Dermot O’Leary will all be back bringing some glamour to Saturday nights.

In a change to their usual line up, the show will only have three categories this year: Overs, Unders and Groups.

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Competing in the Overs category, fans will see journalist Martin Bashir, talk show host Ricki Lake, The Chase’s Jenny Ryan and Corrie star Victoria Ekanoye.

The Unders will see TOWIE’s Megan McKenna, actress Hayley Hasselhoff, EastEnders star Jonny Labey, Love Actually’s Olvia Olson and Glee’s Kevin McHale.

Love Island supergroup, The Islanders, Try Star, Max & Harvey, Cole & Edwards and V5 will all take to the stage in the Groups category.

X Factor boss and music mogul, Simon Cowell said: “It just felt so obvious to do a celebrity version.

“You can’t just keep making the same show that it was 14 years ago and expect it to be the same show today. You’ve got to take a step back for a little while.”

Pussycat Dolls singer, Nicole Scherzinger spoke about the shakeup: “I love that [X Factor: Celebrity]. Obviously it’s a lot shorter, which is the difference between The X Factor: Celebrity and the ones in the past.

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“I loved that we just cut straight to the chase.”

Voicing his opinion on the new show, fan favourite Louis Walsh said: “What we’re doing this year I think is a brilliant idea.

“I think everyone’s going to love watching these celebrities because it’s not what people expect.”

Journalist Martin Bashir, who rose to fame following his controversial interview with Diana, Princess of Wales has said that he would “love the opportunity to develop a second career.”

Jenny ‘The Vixen’ Ryan of ITV’s The Chase said: “I just want to really establish that I deserve to be here and I stand up to the level that the others bring.

Former TOWIE star, Megan McKenna who has gone on to secure a number one iTunes hit with her country song, High Heeled Shoes and also performed at British Summertime in 2018 alongside Michael Buble.

Speaking about her appearance on the show, Megan said: “Do you know what? When I found out about the X-Factor was doing a celebrity version, I was a bit like, ‘Wow! Could this be my time?’”

Love Island supergroup The Islanders made up of Eyal Booker, Zara McDermott, Wes Nelson and Samira Mighty all met on series four of Love Island but have now joined forces.

With a minor background in music, the group have spoken how they’re willing to accept criticism from Simon Cowell.

Speaking about their sound, Zara said: “Wes says I sound like Ariana Grande, but I don’t. I’m not as good as her, but we have a similar tone I guess.”

Wes went on to say: “In the villa [Love Island], we all knew that we could sing because we were singing al the time, we never shut up.”

Eyal Booker replied: “Yeah, West would sing in the shower, he and Samira would harmonise and stuff together.

“Then we’d all get involved!”

The X Factor: Celebrity starts on Saturday 12th October 8:35 pm on ITV.

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