Rumors have been swirling that X Factor host Steve Jones might be replaced on the FOX show, but after crowning Melanie Amaro as first season champ on Thursday night, he told reporters he’s done his job—and he still wants the job!
Steve, who has been accused of oddball on-camera behavior, defended himself, saying, “I was doing my job. That’s what I was told to do and nobody’s taken me offstage at the end of the show and gone, ‘What the hell are you doing? That’s not what we asked.’ They asked me to do something and I delivered.
“[If] you want to do what you do on the biggest stage possible, you’re going to get a lot of criticism — so it doesn’t really affect me.”
And he’s eager to come back for season two, “If they’ll have me. I mean, we don’t find out until sometime in the new year. I don’t know how it all works.” He shrugged, “If they’ll have me back, I’ll do it. If they don’t, I’ll go do something else.”
When asked if the judges were mean to him, Steve laughed to reporters, “Mean to me? No. Poking me with a stick? ‘Back to your room!’ No, they love me! They’re good people. I look forward to working with them again.”
Many thought Steve was too stiff and didn’t show enough personality on The X Factor. But the hunky Welshman implied he was more effective not being slick. “I’m the host. I’m there to bind it all together and hopefully guide the ship that is X Factor along. It’s not about me. A lot of people have been asking me questions — am I coming back next year? But who cares? I’m the host of the show. It’s all about Melanie and the contestants, their moment. Someone just won five million dollars, that’s extraordinary.”
Steve told reporters after finishing the season that he felt, “A sense of euphoria. I’m proud about the entire season; I’m proud of the judges, our contestants. I’m a little bit proud of myself, too. I’m happy with it all, I really am.” And he’s “most happy with revealing to Melanie Amaro that she’s won five million dollars.”
The much-criticized host did admit, however, that it hasn’t been all roses: “It’s been a tough ride in the sense that I’ve told a lot of good people some really bad news like Rachel Crow and Drew and that was horrible. That affected me. I don’t know. Maybe I was a bit naïve going into it emotionally.
“I knew it was going to be tough but I just thought it would be professional, what’s happening, well, that’s the show but you connect with these people. I hung out with them for months on end so that was horrible but if you’ll excuse the conceit I think I deserved that little moment where I got to tell Melanie she’d won it. Her face — it was sublime.”
At the end of the show, Melanie was speechless after Steve declared her the winner. And the host said he struggled mightily to get her to open up: “I wanted to hear her say something. It’s wonderful to see her emotional and crying, but say something!”
Steve is hoping he’ll get to experience the special X Factor moments again next season—but likely won’t know his fate until after his American road trip vacation (which he starts on Jan. 8th). Stay tuned!
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