The X Factor: The Inside Story on Season 2's Wildest Production Numbers

As Creative Director for The X Factor, Brian Friedman has to keep a lot of people happy: the show’s quartet of mentors, their various contestants and a demanding viewing audience. The key to his success, he says, is picking his battles.

“I feel like I’m editing myself every 30 minutes of the day. But you have to know whether an element of a performance is really important to the overall vision,” he says. “And if I know an act especially wants something, then I will do a little extra fighting.”

RELATED VIDEO | Reality Check: Beatles Beaten on X Factor, Voice! Plus: Fifth Harmony’s Surge, Mario Lopez’s ‘But’

Friedman took time out of his schedule to give TVLine an inside look at five of Season 2’s most lavish production numbers — outlining everything from sets and backdrops to choreography and safety supervision. Click through the gallery below to get the full scoop, and for all my reality TV recaps, news and interviews, follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!