Credit: Michael Becker/FOX © 2010 Fox Broadcasting Co. Photo: Simon Cowell Headshot
Forget Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood. American Idol's biggest star is undoubtedly Simon Cowell. So why is he leaving the show he helped make such a success?

The short answer? Boredom. Okay, not exactly. The short answer is actually a new FOX show called X-Factor. In Cowell's own words, it's an "extreme version of Idol" — a singing competition that awards its winner with a recording contract, but also allows groups to compete and does away with Idol's age restrictions. If that doesn't sound like enough of a disparity, Simon Fuller — the creator of Pop Idol, American Idol's British predecessor — agreed. In 2005, the two Simons settled out of court over Fuller's allegations that Cowell's creation, X-Factor, had ripped its format from Pop Idol.

Regardless, come Fall 2011, Simon will now be judging a remarkably similar show. He spilled to Extra, "[G]etting successful is more fun than being successful sometimes. And I kind of missed that, of not knowing what's going to happen and that's how it feels doing this show now." It's a good thing he enjoys the uncertainty, because only time will tell if there's enough room in America's hearts — not to mention our TiVos — for another Idol-esque show.