Music boss Simon Cowell is said to be thinking about launching legal action against rival show The Voice over concerns that they are set to copy his six-chair challenge.
Simon is said to be upset about suggestions that European versions of The Voice will use a similar tactic to the X Factor. After earlier rounds in the X Factor, contestants must then vie to get a seat on one of six chairs to go through to judges houses stages.
Now, The Voice is alleged to be thinking about introducing a similar stage of its own by using a four chair stage, with competitors singing it out to get one of the seats so they can stay in the contest.
According to sources, Simon is talking to specialist lawyers about format protection before deciding to progress with any legal action against bosses at Talpa, the firm which has the rights to The Voice. In the UK, The Voice was on the BBC before ITV bought up the rights to the show. That means that The Voice is on the same channel as the X Factor, albeit at different times of the year. The Voice UK, however, is understood not to be introducing the new format.
Simon has not commented on any impending legal action. The potential legal row follows allegations about the music industry boss’s love life.
The former fiance of glamour model Katie Price, who is also known as Jordan, claimed that she had slept with Simon after telling him she was going to meet him to discuss business.
Argentinian model Leandro Penna was engaged briefly to Katie after a whirlwind romance, but said he called time on their relationship after he discovered texts sent between his partner and the music boss which convinced him, despite her denials, that she had slept with him. Simon has dismissed the claims as nonsense.