Since L.A. Reid and Britney Spears announced their exits from “The X Factor,” viewers have wondered who could be the next contenders to fill the void alongside Simon Cowell and Demi Lovato, who just confirmed she’s back for season three .
While it’s anyone’s guess who will make the final cut, 2011 “X Factor” U.K. winners Little Mix know who they’d like to see on the U.S. judges’ panel — and boy, are they aiming high.
“I think personally either Beyoncé or Rihanna, because they know exactly what the business is like,” Leigh-Anne Pinnock offered. “They know what the industry is like. They’ve done it themselves, and they’re incredible.”
If Beyoncé or Rihanna ever find time in their busy touring and recording schedules to join the show, Little Mix broke down the major differences between the U.K. version and the Stateside show. “It feels like it has a different feel to the U.K.,” Jesy Nelson shared.
“There’s more, like, big ballad singers and obviously country singers,” Jade Thirlwall added, clearly referencing cowboy-hat-wearing reigning champ Tate Stevens.
But the biggest difference of all, according to the group, is what goes down when the contestants head to the judges’ houses. “They had a whole PA system and a microphone,” Jade said. “We just had to stand in this tiny little box.”
“We had choreography and everything, and then just before we went to do the audition at the judges’ houses, they’re like, ’Well, by the way, you can’t dance,’ ” Perrie recalled. “And we’re like, ’We just choreographed something. It took us forever!’ So we were all moving, like, [really close to one another].
“We’re just really unlucky,” she jokingly added. (They weren’t that unlucky, since they won the show their season.)
While the shows may look different on either sides of the pond, one thing remains the same: The important role Cowell plays in mentoring the talent along the way. “I think we’re really lucky with Simon … he lets us get on with it,” Jade said. “We’re very lucky that we get a massive input in everything we do. We don’t get controlled in any way. It’s really good.”
And what viewers may be surprised to know is that Simon is “quite laid-back.” “He’s exactly how he is on TV,” Leigh-Anne said. “He’s truthful but at the same time he’s a nice guy.”