As with any live TV show, there are things that happen during the show’s production that viewers won’t get to see on TV. However, through interviews and various reports, some details have started to emerge about what is going on behind the scenes with “The X Factor” U.S., which is televised in the U.S. on Fox.
Meanwhile, representatives for the show have released a statement in response to the brouhaha over the finalists lip synching David Guetta’s “Without You” in the opening number of the show on November 3, 2011. (Using pre-recorded vocals is commonly done by several talent shows that have group sing-alongs with the contestants.) The statement is:
“All competitive songs, including survival songs, are performed LIVE to a backing track. Due to the finalists’ extensive preparation for their Wednesday night performances, the opening ensemble number on the results show is pre-recorded, the same way as on other shows.”
Entertainment Weekly has an article about what happened during the commercial breaks at the “X Factor” U.S. in the November 3 episode. The show’s four judges are Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, L.A. Reid and Nicole Scherzinger.
Astro sees the world through the eyes of his mentor
Whenever we cut to a commercial break, a dedicated team of hair and makeup professionals would flock to the perfectly plucked judges to make sure that they still looked their best. When L.A. Reid stood onstage with his boys during the first dramatic commercial break, his bald head groomer handed L.A.’s glasses to none other than Astro, boy wonder, to hold. Would Astro still be Astro if he didn’t vamp it up and pose dramatically on stage? No, he wouldn’t. L.A. loved it though, so it worked.
It must have been great to be Rachel Crow or Drew Ryniewicz last night, and pretty embarrassing to be, well, anyone else. “How many people does Rachel have here?” Bill asked. “It’s ridiculous!” Indeed, every time one of the two teen songstresses spoke, performed, or was merely mentioned, the house went crazy. Rachel had the majority of signs, but Drew won the prize for most friends and family in attendance.
Nerves? What nerves?
Before the bottom two were revealed, Bill asked the judges how they were feeling. Paula claimed to be “a bit nervous.” Nicole said she was “very nervous,” and didn’t know what to expect. But L.A. Reid, ever the epitome of Astro-esque confidence, wasn’t sweating it because all of his acts were great. “Don’t you agree that they’re all great?” he asked the audience. (We agreed.)
Close for comfort
As you saw on TV, all four judges stood with their contestants in the tense final moments. When we cut to commercial after Marcus and Drew were announced safe, Simon and L.A. played it cool while the ladies interacted warmly with their mentees. Paula individually hugged each member of all three groups, and seemed to be giving them words of encouragement. Nicole joked around nervously with all of them, but she spent the most time with LeRoy Bell. In fact, there seemed to be a genuine connection between the two, and the sweet hug they shared when he was announced safe only confirmed this.
Entertainment Weekly also interviewed the four judges. Cowell addressed the issue over the judges getting to decide which of the bottom-two vote getters would be eliminated, as well as when the eliminations will be based only on which contestant got the lowest number of votes from the public, not on which of the bottom two contestants the judges choose to save.
Why did you decide to have the judges make the final decision on who goes home, instead of America?
Cowell I think it gives them another shot. In the past, people have been in the bottom and we’ve kept them in, and then over the next few weeks they’ve actually delivered something. So it’s like a lifeline.
Will America ever have the final say?
Cowell: Probably by the semi-finals.
Entertainment Weekly also reports that Cowell and Reid have expressed confidence that one of their acts will make it into the finals. Scherzinger and Abdul, however, aren’t so sure, and they have admitted being “nervous” about the eliminations.
Cowell is mentoring the Girls catgeory (female solo singers under age 30). Reid is mentoring the Boys category (male solo singers under age 30). Scherzinger is mentoring the Over 30s category (solo singers ages ages 30 and over). Abdul is mentoring the Groups category.
An Entertainment Weekly interview had this exchange between the judges:
What happens if every contestant in your group is sent home?
Cowell: You have an easy week.
Abdul: Oh my God, really?
Cowell: Yeah, like I used to do on Idol. You just turn up and judge, and support me. It’s not going to happen to me.
Reid: Or me.