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June 6, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Cheryl Cole

The gossip site TMZ, which first reported that Fox TV and the producers of The X Factor had fired British singer Cheryl Cole for the the U.S. version of the show, reported over the weekend that they are now trying to get her back, concerned about a “pay or play” provision of her original contract. Such a provision would require that the producers pay Cole for a full season of the series whether or not she appears on it. The amount of her pay has been reported to be $1.5 million — seemingly too little for a season (co-judge Paula Abdul reportedly rejected a $15 million offer to return to American Idol) and too high for an individual show (Idol averages around 37 episodes per season). On Sunday the British tabloid News of the World stated: “Cheryl is back. … Key executives at Fox all realized they had made a mistake.” The tabloid’s sister paper, the Sun (both newspapers are owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp as is Fox), reported today that Cole has been given 24 hours to decide whether to return to the show, which begins taping new auditions in New York on Wednesday. However, today’s Hollywood Reporter, citing a high-level industry source, said that “after engaging in some legal brinksmanship the powers behind the show have concluded that it’s best to pay Cole the reported $1.5 million she was owed under her contract and say goodbye.” Meanwhile, Britain’s Guardian newspaper is reporting that Cole is being wooed by ITV to host a British version of NBC’s hit, The Voice.
UPDATE: Simon Cowell said today that Cole will not be appearing on either the U.S. or U.K. versions of X Factor