Gary Barlow vows: “Sack Louis or I”ll walk” as Simon Cowell plans to empty the X Factor judging panel
Simon Cowell plans to axe the entire X Factor judging panel as he desperately tries to recover from this years ratings slump.
But, sick of their constant rows, Gary Barlow apparently already plans to walk if the music mogul doesn”t sack Louis Walsh.
This year”s series has been the most explosive yet with a bullying row, drugs scandal and fixing claims.
On the way out Simon is reportedly planning to axe all of the X factor judges: Louis Walsh, Tulisa Contostavlos, Kelly Rowland and Gary Barlow
But it has still lost about three million viewers since year as Gary, Louis, Tulisa Contostavlos and Kelly Rowland sit in the hot seats.
A source told the Scottish Daily Record: “Simon invested a lot of his time and money making sure that the changes to the show would work but going by the viewing figures, they haven’t.
The man in charge: The music mogul is trying to recover from a massive ratings slump
“Nobody seems to be able to satisfy him with reasons why the show hasn’t been as successful this year.
“He still believes the format is good and that there is life in The X Factor yet. But he’s not prepared to take any more chances, and if that means ripping the show apart and re-building it, that’s what he will have to do.
“He’s thinking about taking away everybody, from backstage staff right up to the judges, and starting all over again. It’s not a surprise to anyone and nobody is safe from the chop.”
Meanwhile, Gary Barlow has apparently given Simon an ultimatum over Louis Walsh: “It’s him or me”.
The Take That singer has not held back in his contempt for the Irishman, accusing him of neglecting his acts.
A source told the Daily Mirror: “Gary and Louis have completely different ideas of what this show is all about. Gary wants itto be a credible singing contest and Louis sees it as entertainment.
“Although he’s been outspoken defending his acts and criticising other people’s, Gary hates all the pantomime rowing and thinks Louis is behind most of it.
“He is also livid that Misha B was voted off last weekas he feels she is hugely talented. He lays the blame for that squarelyat Louis’ door.
“Gary is unsure about his future on the show. Three days ago he said he was looking forward to it all being over.
“The thought of another year with Louis is just too much for him to bear. He says he will only consider coming back if Louis leaves.”
The source said Louis, who has been on the show since it started in 2004, has lost his enthusiasm for the show and he misses working with Simon and Dannii Minogue.
At war: Sick of their constant rows, Gary Barlow has apparently vowed to quit the show if Simon does not axe Louis Walsh
“In previous years Louis was Simon’s right-hand man and has been heavily involved in the production of the show.
“Hewas regularly backstage, bouncing ideas around, especially when it came to novelty acts. But there hasn’t been any of that this year.
“He has barely spoken to anyone other than Tulisa.
“Many people think it would be best if Gary got his wish and Louis left.”
A source close to Gary said he and Louis had been friends for years before appearing on the X Factor.
“Louishelped Gary during some of his darkest days and was there for him when Take That split up and he needed to get his demos heard.
The Original line-up: Simon, Sharon Osbourne and Louis were the first judges on the panel in 2004
“But on a show like this, friendships get strained. They’ll always be mates whatever happens.”
Gary is reportedly unhappy that Louis forged an alliance with Tulisa Contostavlos and his part in the Misha B bullying row.
Tulisa and Louis accused the singer of “backstage bullying” towards certain female contestants.
More drama came when Kelly became the first judge ever to miss a live show when she refused to return from the US because of a throat infection.
And wannabe rocker Frankie Cocozza was booted from the competition after admitting he had used cocaine.
Last month the show was trounced by rival Strictly every Saturday and week seven saw more people tune into Strictly on both nights.
Rumours that the competition is fixed have also circulated.
A news website announced axed contestant Amelia Lily’s return to the show before the public had voted.
And HMV allowed customers to pre-order her winners’ single, which they blamed on a technical fault.