Louis will collect €1m cheque as he returns to X Factor judge role

Louis Walsh

Melanie Finn

Louis Walsh will definitely return to The X Factor for the 15th series of the ITV show, the Herald can reveal.

The music manager will join Simon Cowell on the panel when he reprises his role as the longest-serving judge on the singing contest.

A source said both Louis and his good friend Sharon Osbourne have already received their lucrative contracts for the next big-budget Saturday night series.

Louis is rumoured to be picking up a €1m cheque for each series, given how long he has been with the show.

"They don't know when it's coming back, but they're hoping it will be them with Nicole Scherzinger again, as the whole vibe between the three of them and Simon just worked. The chemistry was right," the source said.

Meanwhile, Louis said he would return to the panel of TV3's Ireland's Got Talent whenever it gets the green light for a second series.

He said the reaction to it had been "fantastic", with an average 350,000 viewers tuning in to watch it every Saturday night as part of TV3's Super Saturday coverage.

"Everyone's talking about this show, saying how it doesn't look like an Irish show," Louis said.

"We filmed most of it over the course of five days in Drogheda and people love the show.

"Irish people want to see other Irish people on television, they don't want to look at the British versions all the time.

"We got amazing characters on it. It was all human life on this show."

He added that three of the judges' golden buzzer selections were brilliant picks, but that Jason Byrne messed up his choice after pushing it accidentally.


Louis also paid tribute to the talents of presenter Lucy Kennedy and said she was down to earth on screen and off.

"Lucy is brilliant. She's so normal, she's like everybody's mammy," he said.

"She she gives out to us if we slag anyone off. She's genuinely nice.

"There's no fakeness to her, unlike with a lot of Irish presenters, who are fake."

Ireland's Got Talent will enter its final stages next week, with three live shows taking place before the grand final tomorrow week.

Despite all the reports of rivalry, Louis said he believes RTE's Dancing With The Stars is a top-quality production.

The Sunday night show will also have its final on the same weekend.

"I think it's a great show. I prefer it to the UK version," Louise said.

"It's just a very misleading title as none of them are stars apart from Deirdre O'Kane, but I think it's brilliant," he said.

"The professional dancers are great on it and I much prefer to watch it than the UK one."