Simon Cowell and Nicole Sherzinger

X Factor 2016 starts right here!

X Factor presenters and judges 2016? At the rate the current crop quit the show earlier this year, it didn’t look like there’d be anyone left for X Factor 2016. Nick Grimshaw was first to leave the show, and spoke out about the firing on his radio show. Nick playfully said that pal Rita’s ’nonsense quotes’ were the reason for being booted off the show, but somehow we think he's being a bit tongue in cheek.

Then Olly, Caroline Flack, Cheryl and Rita all left the show, leaving Simon as the only judge left on the panel for X Factor 2016. 

So, Simon, who did come back for 2016? Nicole Scherzinger, Sharon Osbourne and Louis Walsh are back, joining Simon on the panel.

Read More: The X Factor funny auditions we'll never get over

After the judges filmed the 6 Chair Challenge, it was confirmed that when it came to categories...

Simon is mentoring the girls - this is the first time he’s taken on this category as it stands.

Nicole returned to the boys, which she’s been mega-successful at in previous years. Remember James Arthur and Jahmene Douglas? Then there was Rylan…

Sharon is mentoring the overs, arguably everyone’s least favourite category…

Which left Louis with the groups. Shock.   

If all that wasn't dramatic enough, there was a whole lot of drama before X Factor 2016 even began. Let's take a look back at the drama…

Rita Ora
Rita was the last to leave the X Factor fold following her first turn as a judge in 2015, leaving Simon as the only remaining X Factor judge left on the panel from 2015. According to reports, she's concentrating on her own music and filming 50 Shades Of Grey, leaving no time in her busy schedule to 'find new talent'. Ouch.

 

Louis Walsh
Hot on the heels of news that X Factor favourite Dermot O'Leary would return to Saturday night screens, Louis Walsh signed a £1 million contract to be back on The X Factor.

Rumour had it Louis had flown over to LA for a series of meetings with show boss Simon Cowell, who was said to be 'doing all he can to sign him for the next series'. A source told The Sun before the contract was inked that: 'Louis is up for it. Simon wants an older person back after admitting last year’s series was too youthful, which might have made more people go to Strictly'.

Dermot O'Leary
Olly and Caroline, we love you, but The X Factor just wasn't the same without our Dermot! Simon Cowell confirmed the news saying: 'Dermot's back, hooray! And so is his dancing! Welcome home, Dermot.' Dermot released a statement saying that he was 'really looking forward' to being an X Factor presenter again and was 'very flattered to be asked back', just one series after he wrapped up his eight year career on the show.

Cheryl
Cheryl (no longer) Fernandez Versini quit the series to focus on her brand new album, which she's said to be in the studio recording now. Rumour has it things are great between Chezza and Simon, but that her priorities have shifted. Could this be anything to do with new boyfriend and X Factor alum Liam Payne, and Cheryl's recent glowing looks?  

Cheryl and Liam

Olly Murs
After making his name on the show way back in 2009, Olly was the face of The Xtra Factor from 2011-2012, before taking on the main show in 2015. But after a series of embarrassing blunders (remember THESE X Factor mistakes?), Olly officially quit, with a statement reading:

'This was an incredibly hard decision to make and one I didn’t take lightly as I’ve really enjoyed co-hosting The X Factor. It’s been one big adventure and I loved every minute of it. But my heart belongs to music and I want to concentrate 100 per cent on making my next album and getting back to performing. Last November I was doing the show, promoting a new single and I felt increasingly like the music side of things had to be shoehorned into the TV schedule. Now that I’ve started working on my next album I couldn’t see myself having the time to do both'.

Nick Grimshaw
The Radio 1 DJ dropped himself out of X factor 2016 after only one year in the judging seat, saying it was always meant to be a 'once-in-a-lifetime experience'. Hmm… We’re not sure if that’s 100% true, but we will miss those inside-jokes with Harry Styles and that totally-stealable wardrobe. Nick Grimshaw is living the dream - and here's why. 

His full statement read 'After careful consideration, Nick’s decided to rule himself out as a judge on this year’s X Factor. He loved working on last year’s series alongside Rita, Cheryl and Simon [and] remains a massive fan of the show and is looking forward to watching it this year'.

Caroline Flack
She rocks a pair of shorts like no other (see Caroline Flack's style transformation in full here), but Caz revealed that she was leaving The X Factor after only a year of presenting the live shows. It was heavily rumoured that Flack would get the axe for 2016, but she confirmed that she’s out with a very friendly statement:

'I have had a brilliant time working on The X Factor over the last few years, and hosting the main show was just fantastic, I made some amazing friends. I’m looking forward to carrying on working with the team over at ITV'.

While there were rumours that Caroline was bitter about the axe, and that she'd fallen out with one-time kissing buddy Olly Murs, she has hit back on Twitter, saying: 

We're glad X Factor voiceover Peter Dickson returned to the show for 2016 - the narrator did depart briefly in 2015 (we didn’t cope well when Peter Dickson quit The X Factor), but after huge public demand decided to come back to the show. Rachel Adedeji would never be the same again.

The Show
Actually, we weren't sure if X Factor even was coming back! In September, Simon signed a new deal to keep X Factor on the air until 2019, even though ITV have just bought the rights to The Voice. The freshly-minted Simon stated ‘I want to thank ITV for continuing to be fantastic partners. I’m delighted for the shows and, in particular, for all the talented people who work on them with us’.

ITV director of television Kevin Lygo added ‘Britain’s Got Talent and The X Factor are both big, brilliant, wonderful shows and I am delighted that they will continue to take up their place as an important part of our schedule for the next three years. They are defining shows for us, ones that we are very proud to have as part of our entertainment slate, and they continue year after year, for months at a time, to be amongst the most popular and hugely entertaining formats on television’.

If all this switching has got you nostalgic for X Factor 2015, catch up on all the contestants first X Factor auditions (including Chloe Jasmine), and see the plush X Factor house they stayed in.