Music mogul and television personality Simon Cowell, renowned for launching One Direction on “The X Factor” fourteen years ago, is now seeking to cultivate the UK’s next major boy band through a fresh endeavor distinct from his traditional talent shows. Cowell has announced auditions targeting 16–18-year-olds in Liverpool, Dublin, and London throughout the summer, aiming to catapult these newcomers to the same stratospheric fame achieved by One Direction, who rose to prominence on his televised singing competition before disbanding in subsequent years.

In a recent interview, Cowell expressed surprise at the lack of successful UK bands since One Direction’s peak. He highlighted the important role such shows play in launching aspiring musicians to fame, mentioning examples like Diana Ross and Beyonce, who became famous through their groups. Unlike “The X Factor,” Cowell’s latest project will not have weekly TV shows or viewer voting. Instead, it may become a documentary series, giving viewers and performers a rare look into the tough selection process and its ups and downs. Cowell stressed how talent shows still help new artists get noticed in today’s music scene, amidst many new songs uploaded daily and a few UK artists achieving global fame. While acknowledging the popularity of K-pop bands like BTS, Cowell remains focused on forming a boy band known for its unique identity and authenticity. He noted that the response to auditions has been uncertain, pointing out the challenges of finding talent that meets his high standards.