By ALISON BOSHOFF
One Direction: They hope to at least emulate JLS, who have gone on from the X Factor to build huge success
Though it's not obvious because his demeanour is never all that animated — probably due to a combination of self-control and Botox injections — Simon Cowell is ‘genuinely’ very excited about One Direction, his last remaining act in The X Factor.
The band, formed from five young boys at Bootcamp, could have been a disaster. But this selection of off-cuts, a crop of early-blooming Justin Biebers, are provoking such screams from the audience that the judges can scarcely be heard bellowing their platitudes over the screeching racket.
Cowell is delighted, saying he is sure that his group is going to win. Last week One Direction continued their march with a storming rendition of All You Need Is Love. Again, utter hysteria in the studio.
They are, of course, cuter than a litter of freshly blow-dried kittens. Crucially, they have grasped the need to play the publicity game and have already been ‘in trouble’ for embarking on romances with other singers in the X Factor house.
Harry Styles has even been caught kissing a fan after a show — just the sort of publicity to drive the One Direction enthusiasts into even more of a lather.
‘They get on well and they have steel in their eyes and that’s what I look for in my artists,’ says Cowell. ‘I think they’ll go far.’
But what does the future really hold for Niall Horan, Harry Styles, Zain Malik, Liam Payne and Louis Tomlinson?
Hard day's night: Working hard: Cowell has been working the One Direction boys, pictured leaving rehearsals last night, overtime in his bid to win the X Factor
Win or lose, the indications are that they will be offered a management contract by Simon Cowell, and a recording deal with Syco, his record company. They will hope to at least emulate JLS, who have gone on from the X Factor to build huge success.
But One Direction might take a moment to consider the chequered history of the bands Cowell has launched, each time with terrific fanfare and a vast marketing budget. Not all of them have managed, like Westlife, whom he created with Louis Walsh, to build lasting musical careers.
Indeed, Michelle Barber, one of the bright young things in a band called Girl Thing, backed by Simon Cowell all the way with a lucrative recording contract and a massive promotional budget, told me this week:
Overworked? The group were in the studio until almost 3am recording
‘When it all went wrong, Simon just vanished in a puff of smoke. I wish One Direction all the best, but they ought to know that when you cease to be successful, all the people who have been protecting you simply melt away.’
Friday, 26 November 2010
Is this the right direction, boys? His latest set of X Factor stars should watch out - Simon Cowell doesn't ALWAYS have the Midas touch
By ALISON BOSHOFF