'X Factor' Hits Right Note In U.S., Now Falters In U.K.

by , Nov 7, 2012, 4:54 PM
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X-Factor-AThe success of “The X Factor” in the U.K. helped convince Simon Cowell to leave “American Idol” and bring it to the U.S. While it may not have met sky-high ratings expectations, Fox recently renewed it for a third season. Now, however, it is struggling in its home country.
 
Lower ratings may cost broadcaster ITV some $16 million in ad dollars this season -- the show’s ninth -- the Guardian reports. The episode on Saturday saw audience numbers drop by more than 2 million viewers compared to the same weekend last year. In a 16-to-34 demo, ratings by one metric are down 19%.
 
Networks still put top shows on Saturdays in the U.K., while American broadcasters have largely turned them into a venue for repeats.
 
Prices for spots on “The X Factor,” according to the Guardian, have fallen on average by 9% from $192,000 to about $176,000. Without a ratings boost, ITV looks to collect about $136 million in ad dollars, the newspaper reported.
 
Ad Age reports the cost of an “X Factor” spot in the U.S. is about $245,000, while the results show draws about $200,000.
 
Cowell was a judge on the U.K. show before bringing it to the U.S. in 2011. One of the reasons the show has been renewed is that it has helped Fox gain higher ratings than it traditionally has in the fall. News Corp. COO Chase Carey said this week the company is not pleased with Fox's new series.

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