In a conference call ahead of the final this week Simon Cowell and Alex & Sierra spoke to reporters.
What does Simon think of season 3 so far: “I think the show started off OK. I thought the 4 chair section of the show was terrific. I thought the early live shows were Ok. And the last two weeks have been amazing.
Will there be a season 4? Although there hasn’t been an official announcement yet Simon told reporters “I think–more than think…the show will be coming back next year. As for my role on it, I might have a different kind of role. We haven’t discussed that yet.”
“With the current landscape as it is, we’re going to have a very, very crowded marketplace. What we have with X Factor is a huge core fan base who loves the show, but we’ve got to be more different this year than we were this year. We’re in the middle of a presentation with FOX to say this is what we think the show should look like, this is is what we think the fans will like. Yes, my role could change on that show. But I can’t say any more than that.”
Simon said that the decision was made to let iTunes telegraph the rankings rather than doing last year’s leaderboard.”It was a “cooler way of doing it.” He insists that he “doesn’t have a clue who won each week” and that he was convinced Restless Road were going to be in the final. Also, “if it was the same person ever week [at the top of the board] then I suppose it would have been boring.”
On how he feels about The Voice ratings beating X Factor, “Of course we’re not happy about it, but we’re all big boys here. We haven’t opened with a huge number. We’ll probably keep that number. But lets make a great series, and most importantly, lets make some great records with the artist. That’s what’s going to win the long term battle. I’m never in this for the short term. Out of all the shows this year the [Alex & Sierra] the best artists to come through on any of these shows. That makes up for being second place in the race.”
On next year’s changes if the series returns. Could the show drop down to once a week, “Possibly. I won’t say which night, but I think there’s a better night for us. If we could get it, it would be amazing. They [singing shows] started off as 1 hour shows. Now they’ve turned into two hours, two and a half hours. It’s like watching a movie. Then you have a third hour the following day. It is probably getting too much. You can pack everything into two hours, and I think it could work really well.
If the show comes back would Simon keep the same judging panel? “Probably not.” He has some prospects in mind, but he would not elaborate.
Is Simon annoyed that The Voice aired first, “You’ve got to be very careful about it, is that you don’t look and sound like everybody else. It was frustrating, because X Factor was on the air before The Voice, and we created the whole mentors thing. Then The Voice did the same thing on their show. But The Voice aired in America before X Factor. It looked like we were copying them.”
With Restless Road gone, Simon is putting all of his eggs in the Alex & Sierra basket, “Because of what Alex & Sierra have achieved on iTunes, over the last couple of weeks, which is phenomenal, I’ve never seen this happen with an artist and a contestant. The show has stepped out–what it set out to achieve–which is, you find a star. I’m really happy.”
Will Simon work with eliminated group, Restless Road, “I think so. In any one of these situations, you kind of let the fans decide for you. Because if they’re going to really follow this group, they let you know. They make up our minds for us. There seems to be an awful lot of support for them. And they’re great guys and they’re very talented. I’m disappointed they weren’t in the finals.”
Alex said that Simon allowed them to make their own decisions. “Give me Love” was a real turning point, he says. “We had chose that song on our own. It went over so well. I think that was when Simon started trusting us to make some good decisions on our own. That’s been our thing. Being able to make decisions and being able to work with him.” The duo’s iTunes hit, “Say Something was totally their idea. “It was the first time we both got to sit down…and be artists that are just singing the music that they want to sing. The charts definitely reflected that it was a good decision,” said Sierra.
“When Alex & Sierra auditioned for the show, I thought they would win because of all the shows this year, in my opinion, they are by far the best artists to come through,” he said. “I want the show to end with the best act winning the show.”
Asked if he would continue to work with the duo, Cowell affirmed his commitment: “I would be an idiot not to.”