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Into the Unknown: FOX Officially Announces "X Factor" Order and Launch Date

FOX has officially announced that it has given a series order to a US version of musical competition series X Factor , which will launch in fall of 2011. As a result, Simon Cowell will depart American Idol at the end of the upcoming season and will take over as host and executive producer of X Factor . "I’m thrilled that we have put a date on the launch of the U.S. version of The X Factor , and delighted to be continuing to work with FOX," said Cowell in a statement. "We have a fantastic relationship, a great team and are all very excited about this." The full press release from FOX can be found below. “THE X FACTOR” TO LAUNCH ON FOX IN 2011 FOX announced today that THE X FACTOR will launch in the U.S. in the fall of 2011. Simon Cowell, who created and launched THE X FACTOR in the U.K. in 2004, will serve as both executive producer and judge on the U.S. version, which will be produced by Syco Television and FremantleMedia North America. THE X FACTOR is cur

Channel Surfing: "Lost" Here to Stay?, NBC Unveils New Strategy, "Day One" Cut Down to Backdoor Pilot, "The Borgias," and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing. Variety 's Michael Schneider takes a look at how ABC executives are attempting to stake out a strategy for the future of Lost , which will wrap up its run in May... but might be sticking around via ancillary products and potential sequels. "We've been talking about this for a couple of years now," ABC marketing exec VP Mike Benson told Schneider. "We want to keep it alive but make sure we maintain the integrity of the franchise. We're not about milking this thing for all that it is right now; it's important to see this live for years to come... What Lost becomes after it ends its run is up in the air. It really depends on who comes in to interpret it next." But whatever that future might hold, whether it be novels and comicbooks or indeed a spinoff series down the line, it won't involve current Lost showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse, who will end their oversight on the franchise onc