Simon Cowell plans 'toughest-ever' X Factor

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Simon Cowell

Simon Cowell

Simon Cowell has masterminded the ''toughest-ever'' 'X Factor' this year, which will feature a gruelling five-day boot camp stage.

Simon Cowell has masterminded the "toughest-ever" 'X Factor'.

The 51-year-old music mogul - who is still in charge of the ITV1 talent show, despite having quit the judging panel to launch the series in the US - is planning a major revamp of the competition, which will include a gruelling five-day boot camp stage.

In a bid to restore 'The X Factor' to its glory days, he will put contestants through dance classes, workshops, songwriting sessions given by special guests and lightning auditions, which will see hopefuls forced to learn and perform a track in under an hour.

An insider said: "Simon may not be on the UK 'X Factor' this year but he is making sure it keeps its sparkle. He's really putting the pressure on.

"He wants the boot camp to be a boot camp and not a holiday camp. So that means making it longer and tougher."

Meanwhile, the show boss is said to be keen to ensure this year's judges Tulisa Contostavlos, Kelly Rowland, Gary Barlow and Louis Walsh have an injection of "glitz and glamour" at the judges' houses stage of the competition.

With Simon reportedly dissatisfied with last year's venues selected by former panellists Louis, Cheryl Cole and Dannii Minogue, he is encouraging the current judges to send their contestants to swanky venues in Las Vegas, St Tropez, Miami and Athens.

The source added to the Daily Star newspaper: "He felt the judges' homes were a bit flat last year so he wants more stunning locations."

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