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X Factor may go off air in 2011

The X Factor may go off air for a year as it looks set to clash with the American version.

Simon Cowell, the show's executive producer, signed a deal on Monday to take the talent show to America in the autumn of 2011 – when the British version is due to be screened.

He is now trying to move the UK show into the early part of 2012, which would see it start in January or February, instead of August.

But ITV officials are hoping the programme will still run in autumn 2011 and may ask Cowell to fly between London and Los Angeles every week to appear on both shows. Dermot O'Leary and judge Cheryl Cole are also being linked to the US show, with Paula Abdul set to be a judge.

The news comes after Cowell signed a deal worth more than £12m (€13m) with ITV to keep him on the X Factor until at least 2012. The deal, which includes Britain’s Got Talent, will mean his £6.7m salary will be cut to just over £6m (€6.6m)

Cowell, 50, is negotiating a huge rise in the X Factor's production budget as part of the agreement, which could see an extra £3m (€3.3m) invested per series.

Meanwhile Cowell has quit American Idol – claiming viewers might get "sick and tired" of him if he appeared on both that and X Factor. He said: "You have got to know when it's time to go."

Telegraph Media Group Limited [2022]