Reports Thursday morning say Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger is replacing British performer Cheryl Cole as a judge. While some think she was fired, the Sun suggests she was simply homesick.
"It hasn't worked out," a source tells the paper. "She's homesick and wants to return to the U.K. She's had enough. Whether she ends up back on U.K. X Factor is open to speculation."
Cole, 27, who was a judge on the British version of The X Factor, reportedly had already judged some televised auditions for the U.S. version of the show, which premieres in September.
Paula Abdul and Antonio "L.A." Reid are the other U.S. judges. Scherzinger, 32, originally had been tapped to co-host the show rather than judge.
Showbiz friends of Cole's were quick to offer their support to her. "Our Cheryl, kicked off X Factor?" Russell Brand told a British TV show Thursday. "Oh no! She's Britain's sweetheart."
Dannii Minogue, Cole's former fellow The X Factor U.K. judge, tweeted: "Judging roles should come with a life jacket, drop down oxygen and a life raft!"
Reps for Syco – Cowell's company, which includes The X Factor – are "unavailable for comment."
– Reporting by SIMON PERRY