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Confirmed! Nicole Scherzinger Replaces Cheryl Cole on The X Factor

USMagazine, Monday, June 6, 2011, 9:12am (PDT)

It's official!

After an intense round of musical chairs, it appears The X Factor's judging panel is finally complete. One week after reports surfaced that British singer Cheryl Cole was unceremoniously dumped as a judge on Simon Cowell's new show, Fox confirms Nicole Scherzinger will take her place.

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"Nicole Scherzinger will be replacing Cheryl Cole on the judging panel of The X Factor," representatives for the network and its production team, Fremantle Media North America and SyCo TV, tell Us Weekly in a statement. "Nicole will join Simon Cowell, L.A. Reid and Paula Abdul on their search across America to find the next global superstar or group to win the life-changing $5 million dollar recording deal."

Though Internet reports claim Cole's thick British accent was a possible reason for the switch, a source tells Us show creator Cowell was more concerned with his panel's chemistry.

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"Throughout the whole decision making process, Simon was really torn between Cheryl and Nicole. He absolutely loved Nicole, really felt like she was the right one, but also knew his chemistry with Cheryl had been great before in the U.K. He finally decided on the more comfortable option and chose Cheryl," a source close to Scherzinger tells Us of Cowell and Cole, who cojudged The X Factor's U.K. installment.

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Later, says the Scherzinger source, the mogul felt Cole's appointment was "a mistake."

"With the pressure building for this show to be a success, Cheryl was a much bigger risk and instinctively, as time went on, Nicole felt more and more like the right choice," adds the insider. "Nicole was so disappointed before when she wasn't picked, but now, thankfully, she is in the role she was always meant for. And Simon knows that."

The X Factor will premiere this September on FOX.

By Allison Corneau for UsMagazine.com. For more Channel Surfing, click here.

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