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Oz channel 7 finalises X Factor deal

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    Posted: 15 May 2010 at 13:37

Seven finalises multi-million dollar X-Factor deal


The X-Factor heading to Australia with judges Kyle Sandilands (top) and Guy Sebastian, Natalie Imbruglia and Ronan Keating.

The Seven Network has signed a deal to put the hit British talent format The X-Factor on Australian television.

Seven has stitched together an all-star judging panel for the show, comprising radio bad boy Kyle Sandilands, Australian pop stars Natalie Imbruglia and Guy Sebastian and former Westlife singer Ronan Keating.

The deal was struck after several months of negotiation between Seven, the production company Fremantle, who will produce the show, and the British company Syco, owned by music and TV industry titan Simon Cowell, which owns the format.

Sources say the deal is worth skywards of $20 million.

The re-vamped X-Factor will launch on Seven later this year. It will be part of a major programming push by Seven against the resurgence of Nine and the rise of Ten through its juggernaut MasterChef.

An on-air promotion calling for contestants was aired on Seven tonight during AFL broadcasts in the southern states.

Sandilands is already under contract to Seven as a judge on Australia's Got Talent. Deals with Sebastian, Imbruglia and Keating were finalised today.

Seven CEO David Leckie described the format as a "bloody great show".

He added: "What an incredible line-up of judges."

Fremantle Media's CEO Ian Hogg described The X-Factor as a "phenomenally successful format".

"Our creative team are determined to make this show something very special," he said.

The Ten Network aired a version of the format in 2005, hosted by Daniel MacPherson. Despite a promising start it tanked and a second series was not commissioned.

Sydney Herald

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