The Drum Awards Festival - Official Deadline

-d -h -min -sec

Cheryl Cole Simon Cowell American Idol

Cowell’s X Factor US offers TV’s largest ever prize


By The Drum Team, Editorial

February 8, 2011 | 2 min read

Simon Cowell’s American version of The X Factor, which launches on 27 March, will carry the largest prize in TV history with the winner set to receive an unprecedented $5m (£3m) record deal with Sony Music.

Cowell said of the new show: "If you win this competition I'm going to put my money where my mouth is. It’s a $5m recording contract. That means the winner walks away with $5m, guaranteed. Win this competition; it will change your life forever."

The meaning of a "$5m recording contract" is not entirely clear however, with Cowell facing criticism in 2008 following reports that X Factor UK's "£1m recording contract" meant £150,000 in prize money. Cowell said "we make over a million pound commitment to the winner," meaning hundreds of thousands of pounds invested on development and promotion.

It has not yet been revealed who will join Cowell as X Factor US judges, with rumours suggesting Cheryl Cole and Paula Abdul.

Cheryl Cole Simon Cowell American Idol

More from Cheryl Cole

View all


Industry insights

View all
Add your own content +