Finally! An explanation!
However, it doesn't make the situation any less unfortunate!
Simon Cowell has broken his silence about Cheryl Cole's abrupt exit from the judges panel of both the US and UK X Factor, and admits that he is partly to blame for the amount of miscommunication that led to it - because instead of telling her personally, he sent executive producer Richard Holloway to give her the news!
He says in a lengthy statement:
“When she turned down the UK show, we got back in touch and said, well she is still under contract with the US show so we invited her back. Her position was still there. We had some heated conversations with her US manager will.i.am and he inferred this wasn’t a genuine offer. They thought that if she didn’t turn up on Wednesday then we wouldn’t pay her. We made it clear that she was always going to be paid in full. We got to the point on Saturday when we genuinely thought she was going to accept the offer but again neither she nor they returned any calls. So we’ve announced Nicole. Knowing Cheryl like I know her, we noticed she was quieter than normal, looked a bit uncomfortable but I put some of this down to nerves. The overall feeling was that she was slightly out her comfort zone in America, compared to what she was in the UK. If she had accepted my original offer, she would have made a sensational return and would have understood she was more comfortable in the UK than the US. I apologize that all this has become public and I understand the stress she is under, and I hate that. But we have all been under a lot of stress. When things like this happen I look at the contestant, they must think this is crazy. All the attention is on us. I am sorry this has caused so much anguish and embarrassment, but I stand by what I believe was the right intention. And I would say that to her face right now. I had a text from her last Wednesday. She said she felt let down but at the time she understood that it was a professional decision. I replied saying this was never personal or saying you were terrible. It wasn’t that she was terrible – she was good – I just thought she’d be happier in the UK. After the year she’d had with Ashley and the whole malaria thing, you either shut it down and go for it or you have to be with your friends and family to deal with it. A hundred per cent I have to take full responsibilty because I do have a lot of sway. We are close friends. I still hope we are but sometimes when you’re that close, when you’re making these decisions with someone’s life you have to be certain. I stand by what I said to her. I hope we’re still close friends. I’m sure if she was here now there would be a frank discussion, but will I work with her again? Definitely. She’s a star. The intention was to do it quietly and simply say to her that you have an option to rejoin the UK show. We were saying move to another show for even more money. There was offer of around £2.5million on the table including bonuses. So how is that sacking someone? If that’s being horrible to someone then I would be quite happy with someone doing that to me. She was certainly interested as we exchanged a few texts and she asked if she could have my dressing room at the studio and I said ‘of course.' Her management even asked for a legal waiver to her contract with the US show allowing her to open discussions with ITV. So we genuinely thought it was going to happen. But the big condition was that it was to be kept under wraps and she would make a big entrance last week at the Birmingham auditions and everyone would have loved it. But when the story got out, it changed everything. There was no more communication and we had set a deadline of Sunday, giving her six days to make a decision. That passed and we still had not heard anything. So we announced our UK judges. I genuinely thought she could return to the UK show and be triumphant. Louis knows. He was actually fired but then he came back to a triumphant return. She would have made a sensational return and would have understood she was more comfortable in the UK than she would be in the US. It was never vindictive It wasn’t personal. It was meant with best intentions. I was always going to honour the contract. I apologize it’s been made public.”
Well, there you go.
Unfortunately, it really does sound like a whole lot of miscommunication and hurt feelings that led to all of this, and that's a shame!
But at least he's taking responsibility for humiliating her so publicly, and hopefully at some point these two can work out what happened together privately, without the press' interference and scrutiny!
Hang in there, Chezza! We can't even imagine how hard this all has been!
What do U think? Does Simon sound sincere?
[Image via WENN.]