Olly Murs used to be Simon Cowell’s protege back when he worked on The X Factor UK. The music mogul took a liking to young Olly and took him under his wing. But the honeymoon was over when Simon offered Olly a place on The X Factor UK as a judge. Olly turned him down and instead became a coach on The Voice UK. Simon still hasn’t forgiven him.
The truth is, as a total outside observer, it was the smarty move for Olly. Not only did the BBC reportedly offer him more money than ITV but The Voice is also a much higher rated show. The truth is that The X Factor UK has been in a steady decline in the ratings for years. Though ITV says it has no plans to cancel the show, it still isn’t exactly dying to invest much more money in it either. The Voice also skews younger in the UK than The X Factor, which leads to more album sales for Olly. But none of that matters to Simon. He just sees it as an affront. Olly said,
“I have so much respect for Simon and it was difficult to tell him No – I’m not sure we’re on talking terms. I felt I had such a great time on The Voice, why would I leave after one year? I felt I did an incredible job last year and I’m very proud of that. It was a good move. I said to Simon, ‘It’s not a no for ever. If we can beat The X Factor viewing figures, that would be amazing.”
While we’ve heard from people that work with him that Simon is not as bad a guy as he appears to be, he can still be difficult. Let’s face it, Simon is not used to not getting his way. I hope he and Olly can work something out and be friends again. But I’m not so sure. Simon strikes me as a guy who can hold on to a grudge.