Simon Cowell On Leaving 'Idol': 'I Can't Hide When I'm Bored'

By AccessHollywood.com Editorial Staff
|  Saturday, May 22, 2010  |  Updated 11:30 AM PDT
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Simon Cowell On Leaving 'Idol': 'I Can't Hide When I'm Bored'

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"American Idol" wants Simon Cowell to get paid big time, to the tune of $144 million a year.

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Simon Cowell says he has a good reason for leaving "American Idol" at this season's end – he's bored.

"After a while, you start to go on automatic pilot," he explained on "Oprah" on Thursday. "Too many times, I was sitting there [at the judges' table] bored. The audience deserves more than that … and I can't hide when I'm bored."

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However, Simon's not done with reality competitions, leaving to launch a U.S. edition of the UK hit, "X Factor" – and he told Oprah he still gets a charge out of sitting at the judges' table.

"I actually like doing it, funny enough," Simon said. "I remember ['Idol' Season 3 winner] Fantasia singing 'Summertime,' and for three minutes, I lost myself. I like the buzz it creates. You want to be part of something people are talking about. I love that feeling."

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The new show, he explained, will offer a few rules changes from "Idol" that he thinks will liven things up.

"There's no upper age limit," he said. "Singing groups can enter the show. I have no idea whether it's going to work or not, but I'll put its success and failure on whether we can find a star."

While he may be wrapping up "Idol," the sharp-tongued star said his judging skills are as good as ever.

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"I do trust my judgment as somebody who can spot a potential star," he said.

Copyright 2010 by NBC Universal, Inc. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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