Joey Essex to host The Xtra Factor?

Joey Essex is in talks to host spin-off show 'The Xtra Factor' and has reportedly been screen-tested for the ITV2 job

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Joey Essex

Joey Essex

Joey Essex is in talks to host spin-off show 'The Xtra Factor'.

The former 'The Only Way Is Essex' star has reportedly been screen-tested to be one of the presenters on the ITV2 show, which follows 'The X Factor' and kicks off in August, as bosses look at a number of options for new stars to front the programme.

An insider told The Sun newspaper: "Joey has been a big hit for ITV2 and has a lot of fans out there.

"'The Xtra Factor' is all about being big and brash, and having Joey on board would bring a lot of attention.

"But it is an hour-long show that goes live for the performance shows on Saturday and Sundays. Could he handle that?"

Producers are said to be looking at new hosts, including pairing a male presenter with a female star, or having a single female presenter, which could be current host Caroline Flack.

It is thought Matt Richardson, who worked with Caroline on the show last year, will not be returning to 'The Xtra Factor' and bosses have been looking at potential replacements, including Radio 1 DJ Sarah-Jane Crawford and MTV host Laura Whitmore.

Meanwhile, Simon Cowell is said to be close to finalising the judging panel for this year's show, which is rumoured to include former Spice Girl Mel B, who has been given a week to prove her commitment to 'The X Factor' to secure the job.

Mel would join Simon and Cheryl Cole, who are returning to the show this year, along with regular judge Louis Walsh.

A source said: "She is the front-runner for the fourth judging spot but will only get it if Simon is satisfied it will work."

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