"X Factor" -- the freshly cancelled singing competition show -- didn't help its chances of survival by booting a contestant who could have become the next Justin Bieber.
17-year-old John Lindahl auditioned for the show back in 2011, and eventually got kicked off in the second round.
Apparently ... Epic Records honcho L.A. Reid -- who was also an 'X Factor' judge at the time -- saw something the show didn't, because he immediately signed the Bieber look-alike to a sweet 5-album deal.
We got hold of the legal docs showing John is getting a $300K advance for his first album, and gets a pay hike for each subsequent album ... which could eventually land him up to $800,000.
Listen to him sing. It's like Justin without the sizzurp.
Life Is Complicated with Baby
2/22/2014 10:53 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Simon Cowell was sent packing Friday ... just days after his baby was born, but not because Lauren Silverman threw him out -- because a judge laid down the law in her complicated custody case.
As we previously reported ... Lauren's nasty divorce from Andrew Silverman ended with a custody arrangement for their 7-year-old son Adam, which required Lauren to keep Simon away from the kid for a year. Adam stayed with Lauren over the last few days, which meant Simon needed to skedaddle.
Simon moved into the swanky St. Regis Hotel in NYC ... but we're told he moved back with Lauren when Adam left.
As for the immediate future ... we're told Simon will stay in NYC for 4 to 5 weeks, until their baby is allowed to fly. The new family will then go to London for "X Factor" auditions. They'll be in the UK for around 3 weeks and then return to NYC.
Our Simon sources say he and Lauren will split their time between NYC and London, and since he has a plane it's no big deal.
It comes as a sacrifice. Simon won't be spending much time in Bev Hills ... which he loves. Instead he'll be in NYC a lot -- a place he doesn't love.
Daddy's Almost at the Hospital
Keep Your Vagina Closed
2/14/2014 11:22 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Simon Cowell's baby mama better tighten up her lady parts ... 'cause the "X-Factor" judge just landed in New York -- and he's making a beeline for the hospital.
We broke the story ... Lauren Silverman went into labor early Friday morning -- and Simon rushed home from London to be there -- but based on his look in the pic ... the soon to be dad doesn't look too worried about missing things.
Something tells us he won't be filming the gruesome process.
Donde Esta My Money, Bitch?
1/13/2014 4:53 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
"X Factor" judge Paulina Rubio doesn't take kindly to being snubbed ... in fact, she's now suing Telemundo for trying to replace her on the upcoming season of a kids-themed singing show.
Paulina -- who appeared as a coach on season 1 of Telemundo's "La Voz Kids" last year -- claims the network agreed to pay her $1.325 million to appear on the second season as well ... then reneged on the deal when it found someone cheaper to replace her with.
Paulina claims Telemundo offered up a weak excuse for the diss ... citing scheduling issues with Paulina's commitment to "X Factor" ... but she's not buying it.
Paulina wants Telemundo to cough up the $1.325 million stat ... plus another $100,000 for season 1 "La Voz Kids" clips featuring Paulina which the network sold for ad purposes.
A rep for Telemundo had no comment about the lawsuit.
How Dare 'X Factor'
Joke About My Drinking Problem
12/20/2013 2:12 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Demi Lovato is furious at the producers of "X Factor," grousing that she was blindsided by a skit that mocked her addiction ... TMZ has learned.
Mario Lopez introduced a skit which showed clips of Demi drinking what looked like booze, acting annoying and off center.
Demi is extremely upset because addiction has turned her life upside down. It got so bad, she was living in a sober house for more than a year just to avoid temptation.
You can see her reaction on the show ... at one point it appears she says "That's f**ked up."
Demi's already said she's leaving the show, but now it's pretty clear ... for her it couldn't be soon enough.
We contacted reps for the show ... so far no word back.
Paulina Rubio's Ex
She Screwed Me Over
Now I Want REVENGE!
11/17/2013 12:25 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Paulina Rubio's ex-husband desperately wants a piece of her "X Factor" fortune ... claiming the singer screwed him out of his rightful share of the spoils in their divorce settlement.
Nicolas Vallejo-Najera just filed legal docs, accusing Rubio of concealing financial info during divorce talks earlier this year ... stuff like her big money contracts with "X Factor" and another talent show on Telemundo.
Nicolas and Paulina settled up in March. Under the deal, Paulina agreed to pay Nicolas $6,750 a month in spousal support for 3 years -- but Nicolas now says that number was based on Paulina's low ball income estimates and now he wants more.
Paulina's telling him to pound sand. Her lawyer tells us Paulina came clean during the negotiations and Nicolas is just a "whiner."
TOILET PAPER ATTACK
On Bev Hills Mansion
10/7/2013 10:27 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
It's Simon Cowell's 54th bday today ... and he's marking the occasion by cleaning the TOILET PAPER off his Beverly Hills mansion.
So, who would have the balls to TP Simon's pad? How 'bout a group of 5 girls.
Sources tell TMZ ... the culprits are the ladies from Fifth Harmony, the girl band Simon signed to a record deal after they performed on "X Factor" last season.
Besides the ass paper, the gals also hung a banner that reads, "Happy 87th Birthday Simon!"
With friends like these ...
Sinead to Simon
YOU'RE A MURDERER!
10/4/2013 3:24 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Simon Cowell is a cold-blooded killer ... of music, at least according to Sinead O'Connor.
O'Connor appeared on The Late Late Show in Ireland, and went off on the "X Factor" judge, as well as Louis Walsh -- an entertainment manager who's a judge on the British version of "X Factor."
O'Connor goes on to explain how the industry is now all about money-worship and over-sexualizing young people.
And speaking of over-sexualizing ... she thinks Miley Cyrus has been grossly exploited ... in no small part because she's young and just doesn't get it.
9/29/2013 12:31 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Paulina Rubio needs to have her head examined because she's frickin' crazy ... so claims her ex- husband who is trying to get a judge to order a psych evaluation on her.
We broke the stories ... Paulina and Nicolás Vallejo-Nájera have been battling for more than a year over their son. It's ultra-bitter, with each accusing the other of alienating the boy from them.
Vallejo-Najera is now pulling out all the stops. He claims she hasn't undergone a psych exam as ordered by the judge, so he now wants hizzoner to make it clear -- she better get her head shrunk, or else.
BTW ... Vallejo-Najera says he handed the tyke over to the "X Factor" judge on August 3, and hasn't seen the kid since.
I Spent $7 Mil ... BUT
I'm Still a Bargain Shopper
8/13/2013 5:45 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Britney Spears made a fortune last year -- way more than $10 million -- but she's still a hardcore bargain shopper ... this according to new legal docs obtained by TMZ.
According to documents, Britney's conservatorship raked in nearly $14 mil in 2012. But here's the thing ... she spent $6.8 mil, which sounds like a lot, but a closer look makes Brit look like a bargain hunter.
-- $63.74 at a 99 Cents Plus
-- $11.92 at Pay 99 Cents Or Less
-- A tab from Subway, Wetzel's Pretzels, Domino's, IHOP, 7-11, El Pollo Loco, McDonalds, In-N-Out, Coffee Bean, Starbucks, and Romano's Macaroni Grill.
-- $33,959 on grooming and wardrobe -- bargain basement for a big star.
But there are extravagances as well ... like a $500 manicure. And get this -- $3,400 on XMAS lights.
Our favorite -- Britney paid $1,500 to her Kentwood, Louisiana yard boy -- aka, Jamie Lynn's baby daddy Casey Aldridge.
As For Britney's total worth ... it's a lot. The conservatorship alone now has $36.4 million. And that doesn't include a huge chunk of her net worth ... including the $68 mil she made on her last concert tour and the $15 mil she snagged from "X Factor."
So who's crazy now?
Babies Can't Hold Me Down
I'm on a Boat!
8/12/2013 10:30 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
No fetus is gonna slow Simon Cowell's roll -- the "X Factor" judge is still partying his ass off on a yacht in the French Riviera ... with bikini-clad women ... while his pregnant baby mama is waging her divorce war back in New York.
A shirtless Simon and his mystery blonde were photographed just hours ago, soaking up the rays on France's Mediterranean coast ... not a care in the world.
Meanwhile, Simon's baby mama Lauren Silverman is toughing out nasty divorce proceedings with her estranged husband.
Simon looks concerned ... about his new first mate.
Get Me Out of This Divorce!
8/5/2013 7:45 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Simon Cowell is upset ... very upset he's in the middle of what is becoming a bitter divorce between Andrew Silverman and Simon's soon-to-be baby mama Lauren Silverman, and he's pressuring her to settle ... sources with direct knowledge of the situation tell TMZ.
We're told Simon HATES the bad publicity, which he feels is making him look like an underhanded cad. Our sources say Simon has painted a clear picture to Lauren -- the money she'll get from Andrew is minimal because of their prenup, so any significant cash will come from Mr. X Factor himself.
We're told Lauren is nervous and doesn't want to upset Simon, so she's feeling the heat. Her problem -- she and Andrew are at odds over custody of their 7-year-old son, and she feels she may have to give too much in order to end things and appease Simon.
Although both sides have said they want to resolve the divorce amicably for the sake of their kids, we can tell you there's a lot of bad blood on both sides and it's getting really nasty.
I Was In the Dark
8/4/2013 1:01 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Andrew Silverman is PISSED after reading the TMZ post Saturday, in which close friends of Lauren told us she's upset at allegations she cheated on him ... because she says he knew about her relationship with Simon Cowell from the get go.
A close friend of the couple tells TMZ ... the notion that Andrew knew about the relationship is ridiculous, adding "She knows this isn't true."
Another thing that pissed Andrew off ... that sources told us Lauren was upset at stones being cast at her because Andrew partied with girls all over the world (though she never used the word "cheating.").
Andrew's friend tells us Andrew says it sounds like "a desperate attempt to smear him."
And the plot thickens. Lauren's lawyer fired off an email to us, saying a lot of the comments attributed to his client are inaccurate, though he doesn't specify which. He also says Lauren and Andrew are trying to settle the divorce privately.
As for Andrew ... the friend says "The two of them have been spending time trying to sort it out and keep things as normal as possible for the kid and this doesn't help."