X Factor 2018 first-look teaser confirms launch date… and brings back popular contestant from last year

The X Factor is only a few days away, as the official launch has now been confirmed!

The ITV talent competition has released brand new footage along with the big news that the first audition show of the series will be airing on September 1 at 8pm on ITV. Have a look below:

Simon Cowell doesn’t look thrilled by the news, plugging his ears during one ponderous act. Louis Tomlinson seems as laidback and friendly as expected, while husband-and-wife judges Ayda and Robbie appear to be having the time of their lives.

Did you notice any other familiar faces? The clip also features returning contestant Anthony Russell on the X Factor stage a year after he was forced to drop out of the Bootcamp round for “personal reasons”.

Anthony made an unusual first impression when he auditioned for Cowell and company with a black eye. Luckily, there’s no sign of any physical trauma during his brief appearance on-screen in this new teaser.

Fans are already congratulating Anthony on getting a second shot:

Much has been said about having actress and Loose Women panellist Ayda joining the X Factor judging panel, but husband Robbie has argued that she brings a crucial point of view to the show.

“Ayda is a member of the public too and they never get it wrong,” the former Take That singer recently insisted.

Robbie went on: “It is fallacy that there’s a magic formula to what makes a pop star. If a member of the public was up here now their opinion would be as valid as hers.”

Ayda herself has argued that she has a “huge amount of empathy” for the music-making process because of her marriage, and has stressed: “I know what it takes, from creating the songs… to promoting, to live shows. It’s a very emotional process.”

The X Factor kicks off its new series on September 1 at 8pm on ITV.

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