X Factor is coming to New Zealand

Last updated 17:06 14/09/2012
Simon Cowell
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JUDGE AND JURY: Simon Cowell created X Factor and is currently on the judging panel for the US series. No word yet on who will judge the Kiwi version.

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Talent show X Factor is coming to New Zealand next year - thanks partially to funding from NZ On Air.

The music show, put on the map by music mogul Simon Cowell, pits contestants against each other in the search for a person or group to sign a recording contract.

New Zealanders, from Invercargill to Kaitaia, will now have the chance to showcase their talents as the X Factor has been confirmed to air on TV3, following a NZ On Air contribution of $1.6 million for 30 episodes.  The government agency also backed the 14 episodes of TVNZ's New Zealand's Got Talent to the tune of $1.6 million.

"We are thrilled that variety series New Zealand's Got Talent has premiered to a huge audience this year, and we wish the same success for The X Factor NZ in 2013," NZ On Air chief executive Jan Wrightson said.

"Not only does it provide arts entertainment for audiences in prime time, but it also helps to find new music talent. Both are important to us."

Wrightson said: "These programmes celebrating this country's talent are very expensive to produce and we are pleased to help get them over the line.

"NZ On Air is only able to fund one of these series in a single financial year, so the timing has worked out well."

Since its first United Kingdom-series in 2004, the X Factor has launched in over 20 territories.

The show will be open to singers aged 14 and up - solo performers or groups. After the final audition process, the four judges will take on mentoring roles and the performers are split into categories - boys under 25, girls under 25, the over 25s and the groups.

The winner will be signed to Sony Music Entertainment New Zealand.

"For the viewers, this is the biggest television event New Zealand has seen, for contestants, it's a competition that changes lives and launches careers," X Factor co-executive producer Andrew Szusterman said.

The show will combine the best talent show format with an ''intensely local flavour,'' he said.

It will be co-produced by MediaWorks and FremantleMedia Australia.

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