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Simon Cowell Addresses Nicki Minaj ‘X Factor’ Rumors

FilmMagic I Bauer-Griffin

As the list of rumored judges on Simon Cowell‘s long-awaited U.S. version of ‘X Factor‘ piles up, Cowell has finally addressed rumors that Young Money‘s leading lady Nicki Minaj will be one of the confirmed panelists.

“We spoke to Nicki actually about a lot of projects,” the show’s creator conceded. “It wasn’t specifically about this, but we were just very interested to meet her. I’m a big fan of hers. So I don’t know if it’s gonna be this show or something in the future, but it was definitely somebody I wanted to meet.”

Known for his typically harsh critiques and cruel one-liners, Cowell continued to heap an abnormal amount of praise on the Harajuku Barbie boss, further fueling the rumors that Nicki has been selected for the show, despite similarly substantiated reports to the contrary.

“Off her own back she’s had a phenomenal year last year and she’s gonna have a phenomenal year this year,” Cowell continued. “She’s very smart, very influential, very bright and along with artists like Jessie J. You can’t ignore them and sooner or later they have to be in our world and we have to be in their world.”

Cowell has claimed that the show’s panel will be the “best judging panel so far,” featuring a diverse assortment of artists and industry leaders, like confirmed judge L.A. Reid.

“It’s gonna be a balance between guys and girls, and it should be a balance between people who have been singers and also, like me, have worked behind the scenes and know what they’re talking about it,” the industry mogul revealed. “It will be the best judging panel so far. I promise you: If I get the people I want, I’m really happy.”

The show’s producers have also been rumored to have tapped singers Taylor Momsen and Enrique Iglesias for the U.S. version of Cowell’s hit U.K. show, though unfortunately, Mariah Carey has “respectfully declined.”

Watch Nicki Minaj’s ‘Moment 4 Life’
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