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Last Updated: Tuesday January 12 2010 07:15 GMT

Cowell quits US Idol for X Factor

Simon Cowell

Simon Cowell is quitting his job as a judge on American Idol so he can launch the X Factor in America.

The top TV talent show judge said the ninth series of American Idol would be his last, even though he's been offered loads of money to stick with the show.

"I wanted to do something different," he said. "I wanted a new challenge."

America's version of the X Factor is due to hit screens in 2011, but Simon said he hoped it would keep its British "craziness" and "unpredictability".

"I wouldn't gloss it up for the American market," he said. "I would never do that."

Meanwhile, it's not yet clear who, if anyone, will replace Simon as an American Idol judge.