Belfast Telegraph

Dermot O’Leary: 'Sharon Osbourne and Nicole Scherzinger deserve the big bucks on X Factor'

The X Factor is back on screens from Saturday night (02Sep17).

Sharon Osbourne and Nicole Scherzinger do deserve more money than Louis Walsh on the X Factor, Dermot O’Leary has declared.

The three judges, along with boss Simon Cowell, will be back on British TV screens from Saturday (02Sept17) as they look for the next big thing in music.

It was reported that for the 2016 ITV series, former Pussycat Doll Nicole and music manager Sharon were paid nearly £2 million each, while Louis received £1 million.

“If it’s true it’s absolutely beautiful — and quite right, too! They should get more. They both work harder than Louis, so they deserve more than him (Louis),” Dermot smiled to British newspaper Metro.

The fees are in stark contrast to recently released data from rival channel BBC, which showed only a third of its 96 top earners are women.

While the salaries have gone up, ratings for the X Factor have steadily slipped over its 14-year run. Last year’s finale, which saw Matt Terry crowned winner, was the least watched so far, though Sharon insists there’s still life left in the TV talent show.

“I want to do my best, and you don’t want to be on a show that’s failing,” she said to Metro. “Nobody takes a job and goes, ‘I don’t care if it’s the least-watched show in England!’”

Sharon, who rejoined the judging panel for the third time last year, also made light of the fact that she often forgets her acts’ names – something that has caused viewers to accuse of her being drunk in the past.

“For f**k’s sake, I can’t remember anyone’s name!” she cackled. “I’ve worked with the same women on (U.S. show) The Talk for eight years and still don’t know their surnames.”

Sharon’s The Talk co-presenters include comedian Sheryl Underwood, news anchor Julie Chen and Roseanne actress Sara Gilbert.

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