by Hilton Hater at

Yes, Paula Abdul really is out of The X Factor.

While no one doubted the veracity of this morning's report - which detailed the ousting of Abdul, Nicole Scherzinger and Steve Jones - the singer herself had not spoken out about the decision until now.

X Factor Team

"I’ve learned through my longevity in this industry that business decisions often times override personal considerations," Paula said in a statement. "Simon and I, along with Fox and [producers] Fremantle, have been communicating about this for a while now, and I have absolute understanding of the situation.

"Simon is, and will remain a dear friend of mine and I’ve treasured my experience working this past season with my extended family at Fox and Fremantle. I want nothing more than for The X Factor to exceed ALL of their wildest dreams. This truly has been a blessing and I am most grateful.”

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by Hilton Hater at

Simon Cowell was not kidding about major changes coming to The X Factor.

With Steve Jones officially out as host - the Brit Tweeted the news himself - new reports indicate that neither Paula Abdul nor Nicole Scherzinger will return for season two.

"At this point, the only ones staying are Simon and L.A. Reid," an insider tells E! News. "Simon wants to take the show in a different direction."

We can only hope that direction involves fewer contrived fights between judges and more of a focus on the singers themselves.

Original X Factor Panel

Producer Nigel Lythgoe was apparently taken aback by this development, Tweeting late last night: "Shocked to see Simon has fired Paula Abdul, Nicole and Steve from the X-Factor."

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by Hilton Hater at

Drew Ryniewicz was eliminated from The X Factor on Thursday night, a result that left Simon Cowell clearly angry at his fellow panelists for voting off one of his charges.

But Simon's wrath is nothing compared to the words left for Paula Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger by fans of Ryniewicz on Facebook.

Among the passionate, frightening, misguided messages posted by Drew supporters over the last few days:

  • "F**K you paula you dumb c**t you voted off the most talented person on your f**king show. i hope you die you DUMB B***H."
  • "I hope you die, you selfish----------"
  • "@NicoleScherzy @paulaabdul go die"

These folks would be well-served to heed the words of Drew herself in this interview: she made it all the way to the final seven. That's pretty darn impressive, and she has many bright years ahead of her. Chill, people.

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by Hilton Hater at

Paula Abdul is officially back.

It took a last-second deal, but the former American Idol judge will rejoin Simon Cowell this fall on Fox, helping to judge The X-Factor. She just released her first statement on the gig:

"I am excited beyond words to be a part of The X Factor. I couldn't be happier to bring my love for cultivating talent and performance to such a wildly anticipated show... I'm also delighted and grateful to be sitting next to Simon again...but you might want to check back with me in a week or two!"

Simon and Paula

The X-Factor kicked off auditions in Los Angeles on Sunday, with Simon and Paula looking as cozy as ever. The former is psyched to be reunited with his friend and co-worker. Said Cowell:

"This show would never have been the same without Paula and I can't believe I am saying this, [but] I have missed her a lot, and I am thrilled she's on the show."

[Photo: WENN.com]

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by Hilton Hater at

It looks like Simon Cowell has fulfilled his dream judging panel for The X-Factor.

With producer L.A. Reid already on board, Deadline Hollywood reports that Paula Abdul and Cheryl Cole are nearing deals to finalize their roles on the upcoming singing competition.

Both have worked with Cowell in the past; Abdul on American Idol and Cole on the British version of The X-Factor.

Cheryl Cole Image

“I’ve always wanted Paula," Simon told the publication. "I’ve never found anyone better than her... We’ve agreed that we would meet as many people as possible, and now we’re reaching the deadline we’ve got to make the decision soon. But I think she’s got a really good shot.”

As for Cole? “Shes a great judge. She’s smart... If people take to her like the British public did, I think she’s going to do really well in America. And Fox was desperate to hire her."

Well, yeah. The X-Factor champion will receive $5 million, along with the chance to ogle Cole for numerous weeks on the show.

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