The Sun today reports that Take That singer Gary Barlow nearly passed up the chance to be a judge on the X Factor as he’d been lined up to be the official singer for the 2012 Olympics.
Here’s the article in full…
TAKE That star GARY Barlow nearly did not sign up for The X Factor – because he had already agreed to front a series searching for an Olympics singer. It aimed to find a star to sing at the Games opening ceremony in London next year.
Chart-topper Gary, 40, was left disappointed when the show was vetoed by Olympics chiefs. It was only then that he agreed to become a judge on The X Factor’s panel – pocketing a £1.5million pay packet.
Insiders said Gary was passionate about doing a show for the BBC because he is a big supporter of its public service credentials.
The series would have seen Gary auditioning wannabes from around the country to win a spot singing at the Olympic opening ceremony, which will be televised by the BBC and screened to billions around the world.
But sources said the show was shelved after Olympics chiefs said they would rather have big name stars perform at the showpiece event.
An insider said: “Gary really wanted to do a show on the BBC as he believes in its public service mission.
“He loved the idea of finding an amazing unknown singer to appear at the opening ceremony in 2012.
“But Olympics chiefs made it known they wanted big name acts to perform instead and the show had to be pulled. It was only then that Gary turned to The X Factor and became the new Simon Cowell.”
Gary has been a big hit on The X Factor auditions so far, giving no-nonsense advice to performers. However, some acts have said he is too mean.
The heart-throb has said he is keen to help others get a career in music after the huge success he has enjoyed with Take That, who are currently performing to sell-out crowds on their nationwide tour.
He said: “I’m here to find the next generation of stars. There are so many youngsters out there with talent who need a platform like The X Factor to be noticed.”