FremantleMedia has announced that it is launching a local version of The X Factor in the Middle East.
The X Factor, XSeer Al Najah (The X Factor, The Essence of Success) will be produced by Lebanese production company Studiovision and will premiere on 26 March on music channel Rotana TV, culminating in the grand finale on 4 June.
FremantleMedia regional manager, Middle East and North Africa Isabelle Garcia said, “We are really excited about bringing this format to the Middle East. Not only do we have fantastic judges with great backgrounds but also the acts coming forward are something the Arabian public has never seen before.”
FremantleMedia adds that thousands of hopefuls with dreams of becoming the next Arabic singing sensation have turned up to perform at auditions in The Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Kuwait, Egypt, Dubai and Tunisia. Judging the talent are Michel Elefteriades, owner of the celebrated Music Hall in Beirut; Nelly from Egypt, a performer in both the acting and singing fields and Khaled El Sheikh, a Bahraini producer and composer. Following in the footsteps of the UK production, the three categories will comprise younger and older contestants and groups.
The X Factor has been broadcast in five territories to date: the UK, Belgium, Colombia, Australia and Russia.
The difference between The X Factor and SuperStar is that at the end of the auditions, hopefuls are whittled down to 120 and divided into three categories. Each category are assigned one judge faced with the task of shaping up their acts so that one of them emerges as the winner.