“The X Factor” U.K. judge Kelly Rowland has responded to a tabloid report about how the show’s producers are considering making the judges switch their mentor categories just a few weeks before the show’s eighth season ends in December 2011. Rowland says that she does not like the idea at all, and she’s prepared to quit the show if the producers go through with this plan.
The Sun, which first published the story about the alleged plan to make the switch, reported that the radical move will be done in an effort boost the show’s ratings. Simon Cowell is no longer a judge on “The X Factor” U.K., but he is still one of the show’s executive producers.
Rowland is mentoring the Girls category (female solo singers under the age of 25), and the remaining finalists in that category for 2011 are Misha Bryan and Janet Devlin, who have both been praised by the judges as being among the most talented contestants that “The X Factor” U.K. has had this year.
Representatives for “The X Factor” U.K. have not commented on this report about the judges switching mentor categories, but Rowland told the Sunday Mirror:
“I don’t want anybody touching my girls. I’m not giving Misha and Janet up for anyone. I’d walk before I gave them up. Everybody is doing such a good job mentoring their acts. I don’t know why they’d do that.”
Rowland, Tulisa Contostavlos and Gary Barlow joined “The X Factor” U.K.’s judging panel in May 2011. The show’s other judge is Louis Walsh, who has been with “The X Factor” U.K. since its 2004 debut.
Speaking about her “X Factor” boss Cowell, Rowland commented:
“When Simon gave me the job he liked the fact I stood by my word. He calls me Lippy – Simon likes me because I have a smart mouth. I’m not afraid of him and I respect him. We would be electric on the same judging panel… can you imagine? But I love being on a panel with Gary, Louis and Tulisa – despite what people say.”
Rowland also hit back at criticism from people who think she faked the viral throat infection that she says caused her to cancel her appearances on the “X Factor” U.K. live shows on October 29 and October 30, 2011.
“It was such a slap in the face. There was no reason to say that. I’m only half-way back to my best now. I’ve got a hacking cough. When people started saying that, I was annoyed. I don’t wish anybody to feel the way I felt last week. My neck to my jawline was swollen. It wasn’t pretty. I looked like a lineback football player.”
People who did not believe that Rowland had a throat infection speculated that Rowland fabricated the illness to get out of facing Contostavlos. Rowland and Contostavlos have been in a well-documented feud that escalated when Contostavlos accused Bryan (on the October 22 “X Factor” episode) of being a backstage bully. Rowland vigorously defended Bryan and said that Contostavlos’ remarks about Bryan were inappropriate.
Commenting on the feud, Rowland had this to say about Contostavlos to the Sunday Mirror:
“I spoke to her when I was away ill, I saw her at Gary’s house this week and I saw her at the Cosmopolitan Awards. To not talk to Tulisa would be childish. Don’t get me wrong, I was very disappointed but we are cool now. Everybody needs to get on with it and move on. I have respect for Tulisa. We are not dissimilar. We both grafted and made our careers from scratch and have strong work ethics. We’ve agreed to disagree over the Misha debacle. This is a competition and it won’t be the last time that me, Tulisa or Gary and Louis have a disagreement.”
In other news about Rowland, she confirmed reports that her good friend (and former Destiny’s Child band mate) Beyoncé Knowles is going to have a baby girl. Knowles and her husband, Jay-Z, are expecting their first child together; the baby is due in Feburary 2012.
According to the Daily Mail, Rowland said about the unborn child:
“I have no idea what I’m going to buy Beyoncé at the baby shower because Jay is going to buy that little girl every single thing possible. She won’t be spoiled but she will be very well looked after. I’ll be on hand for babysitting duties and I’m actually very good with messy diapers!”