Paula Abdul, Nicole Scherzinger and Steve Jones may be out, but Simon Cowell is in. All in. He's the man behind The X Factor and, to his credit, the first to admit that season one did not go as planned.

"Can I do it better than last year? Yes. Will it be better? Yes. But that takes hard work and a lot of planning," the judge/producer says in a new chat with Extra.

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When it comes to potential professional artists, Simon Cowell has a very clear idea of what he wants. When it comes to love? Not so much.

The singer tells UK's The Daily Mirror that he and Mezhgan Hussainy - a makeup artist he met behind the scenes of American Idol in 2003 - are no longer engaged. But are they still dating? We'll let Simon explain:

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It wasn't all an act, Simon Cowell told Barbara Walters on her Most Fascinating People of 2011 special last night. He truly didn't like Paula Abdul when the two first worked together.

"The truth was on the first two seasons, we couldn't' travel on the same plane together," Cowell said during his ABC interview. "We really disliked each other that much."

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With Rachel Crow fans still still buzzing over Nicole Scherzinger's decision to send the most recent elimination episode to a deadlock, resulting in the ousting of this cute contestant, Simon Cowell has now taken it upon himself to anger Marcus Canty supporters.

Speaking to reporters this week, the judge scarcely even acknowledged the singer as an X Factor contender, despite his presence in the final four, saying:

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It has produced some great acts early on in it first season run - Josh Krajcik and Jazzlyn Little, for example - but The X Factor has NOT produced the kind of ratings Simon Cowell had initially hoped for.

At one point this summer, the former American Idol judge said he thought his new show could defeat his old and earn 20 million viewers per week. The actual results have been closer to 12 million.

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Never one to mince words, Simon Cowell acknowledges Lady Gaga has great star power. Vocally, though, he says she's the most boring singer imaginable.

We're not exaggerating, that's his honest analysis. The X Factor judge recently slammed Lady Gaga, calling her “the most boring singer in the world.”

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Simon Cowell Biography

New American Idol Judges Simon Cowell is our favorite American Idol judge. He's sometimes mean, but always honest and entertaining. He also knows how to put Paula... More »
Born
Birthplace
Simon Phillip Cowell
Full Name
Brighton, East Sussex, England

Simon Cowell Quotes

It was a little bit like Chihuahua trying to be a tiger.

Simon Cowell [following David Archuleta's attempt to sing a Chris Brown song]

I’d pack your suitcase.

Simon Cowell [to Jason Castro, after the former sung "I Shot the Sheriff"]