X Factor To Extend Live Shows To 3 Hours?

Everyone knows that there are two types of X Factor viewer. The first (usually, but not always female) is a massive fan who has favourite contestants, hates the fact that ‘joke’ acts make it so far and spends as much time discussing the judge’s attire as she does assessing the singing talent. The second is the reluctant viewer (usually, but not always male) who is simply waiting for the show to end so they can go down the pub or watching with his girlfriend in a deal that will see him slumped on the sofa the next day watching footy.

Depending on which of these two people you are, you will react with joy/anguish at the this morning’s news that ITV could be extending X Factor’s live shows to a whopping three hours when the eighth series kicks off later this month. To put that into perspective, that’s nearly as long as a Lord of the Rings film. Last year’s series opener was 150 minutes in length, but producers are said to be considering pushing for a three hour slot to maximise advertising profits.

“The feeling is that the audience can’t get enough of the show and extending the programmes again seems the natural next step,” a source told The Mirror. “The idea is simple. More X Factor will mean more viewers, more advertising space, more telephone votes and, ultimately, more revenue.”

Well, at least they’re honest about it. If the plans do come to fruition the etra live shows will reportedly see the live finals kick off with 16 contestants. Last year, 12 finalists were joined by four “wild card” contestants. However, several double eliminations saw the number cut down over the 10 weeks.

“The final details are still being ironed out but there will definitely be more X Factor on screen this year than it has ever been seen before. There are going to be longer shows and, hopefully, more of them,” the source explained.