The X Factor, Simon Cowell, and a touch of … Downton Abbey?

Downton AbbeyWhen the new season of The X Factor premieres on ITV, you may have the Downton Abbey revival nobody was expecting.

According to a report from The Sun, the producers from the show are strongly considering using the iconic Highclere Castle from the series as the Judges’ Houses spot for Simon Cowell and his team. It obviously makes some sense given that both shows are from the same network, and that Downton Abbey is arguably one of the most famous British series around the world these days save for Doctor Who. While it may be off the air for now, all signs point at the moment towards there eventually being a movie.

Since the last thing that The X Factor knows how to do is be subtle with almost anything, you can expect this presentation to be all sorts of big, over-the-top, and perfectly what you would expect from Simon Cowell at the home of Lady Mary and Robert. Here is what one source had to say to the publication on the subject:

“The show producers were keen to do something a bit different for Simon’s house this year and Highclere Castle was suggested …. They loved the idea. They think it would be great fun to have Simon sweeping down the grand drive in a vintage Rolls Royce to greet contestants.

“And they would of course hire a team of butlers to wait on him and the contestants. At the moment that is their number one choice.”

If we’re being honest, we’re actually rather shocked that this was not an idea thought of sooner given that in its heyday Downton Abbey was drawing more than 8 million viewers and the two shows aired right after one another on the night. We know that the reason why the show does love to use other locations is because they want to give their acts a “taste of stardom,” which is really some sort of artificial expectation that people really live in crazy tropical estates all the time when it is not actually the case. (We do think that there would be something super-funny at some point in having the contestants do this at Transylvania or somewhere else known for being creepy more so than luxurious — if they’re shaking everything else up with this season, why not this?)

Other reports

There are some other reports out there about producers trying to change the audition format by timing things more and getting people in and out the door. With that said, does that matter as much when there is less buzz around the show? If this was to be a rule, we feel like it would’ve been better suited to put into action a few years ago as opposed to right now.

As a reminder, you can share some of your thoughts on this story in the comments! Meanwhile, head over here to get some additional news right now when it comes to the show. (Photo: ITV.)

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