X Factor Names Nicole Scherzinger, Brit Steve Jones as Hosts; Paula Abdul Officially on Board

Former Pussycat Doll/Dancing star Nicole Scherzinger and Brit hunk Steve Jones have officially been named hosts of Fox’s U.S. port of The X Factor, to premiere this fall.

Interestingly, one of the two was not executive producer Simon Cowell’s first choice. American Idol vet Paula Abdul, meanwhile, has officially closed a deal to join the judges dais.

It’s Official: X Factor Nabs Brit ‘Brat’ Cheryl Cole as Judge

A singer/songwriter, Scherzinger recently served as a guest judge on the UK X Factor, while Jones is a fashion model-turned-TV personality who across the pond has hosted several shows, including the weekend kiddie program T4.

“I loved working alongside Simon on the UK [X Factor], and cannot wait to see what he has in store for the U.S.,” Scherzinger said in a statement.

An unfamiliar face to America, Jones said he had been approached about working in the States before “but never felt right about those opportunities. But when [Fox’s] The X Factor came up, I lept at the opportunity.”

Jones was not the first pick to cohost with Scherzinger. Cowell was partial to High School Musical alum Corbin Bleu, but to hear Deadline tell it, Scherzy was sour on the idea of working alongside someone so young-looking.

Effective immediately, Scherzinger and Jones — a la American Idol‘s Ryan Seacrest — will dog wannabe contestants starting with the audition stage and through to the live performance shows.

The one remaining loose end for Fox’s The X Factor had been the fourth judges’ chair. But after down-to-the-wire negotiations, Abdul has signed on the dotted line to reunite with Cowell as Judge No. 4. Music industry vet L.A. Reid and Brit singer Cheryl Cole round out the dais.

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