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The X Factor (New Zealand TV series)

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Reality television

Country of origin
New Zealand

No. of series

First episode date
21 April 2013



Created by
Simon Cowell

Original language(s)

No. of episodes

Presented by
Dominic Bowden

Number of episodes

The X Factor (New Zealand TV series) thecornerconzwpcontentuploads201305xfactor

Daniel Bedingfield, Melanie Blatt, Ruby Frost, Stan Walker

Natalia Kills, Willy Moon, Stan Walker, Melanie Blatt, Dominic Bowden

The X Factor (UK), The X Factor (Australia), New Zealand's Got Talent, The X Factor (US), New Zealand Idol


Natalia kills and willy moon fired from the x factor nz following scathing attack on contestant

The X Factor is a New Zealand television reality music competition, originating from the original UK series and based on the Australian The X Factor production format. The show began in 2013 and is open to anyone aged 14 and over. The winner is signed to Sony Music Entertainment New Zealand.


The contestants are split into the show's four traditional categories: Boys, Girls, Over-25s and Groups. From the second series, bands are also able to enter in the group category.

Both series have been hosted by Dominic Bowden.

Best of the x factor new zealand off all time hd new


The X Factor was created by Simon Cowell in the United Kingdom and the New Zealand version is based on the original UK series. TV3 initially purchased the rights to produce a local version of The X Factor in 2010. In September 2012, TV3 finally confirmed that the first series would begin production in early 2013. Broadcast funding agency NZ On Air confirmed they would contribute $1.6 million to the first series as a minority investor, for the production of 30 episodes of 60 minutes duration each. Dominic Bowden is the sole host of the series.

Series 1 (2013)

The first series was co-produced by MediaWorks and FremantleMedia Australia. The series' key sponsors were Ford New Zealand as broadcast sponsor, Samsung Electronics as technology partner with McDonald's and Coca-Cola as programme partners. The broadcast sponsor of series two is McDonald's, with Mazda, Fruttare, 2degrees and VO5 as programme partners.

The judging panel for season one consisted of Australian Idol winner Stan Walker, All Saints singer Melanie Blatt, Kiwi singer Ruby Frost and New Zealand-born singer/songwriter Daniel Bedingfield. The judges were accompanied by Dominic Bowden who hosted the series. The series premiered on 21 April 2013 and finished on 22 July 2013. For the judges retreat, judges were assigned or selected an assistant judge to assist their choices, as well as taking their contestants international. Bedingfield was assisted by singer/songwriter and sister Natasha Bedingfield and travelled to Rarotonga, Blatt was assisted by Rachel Stevens and travelled to Mahurangi, Frost was assisted by X Factor Australia judge, Guy Sebastian and travelled to Sydney and Walker was assisted by Hollie Smith and went to Queenstown. Jackie Thomas was announced as X Factor NZ winner for 2013, with Whenua Patuwai placing second and Benny Tipene coming in third place.

Series 2 (2015)

A second series of The X Factor was not included in TV3's 2014 line-up, however in August 2014 TV3 confirmed that a second series of the show would be made. Production began in November 2014 and the series will screen in 2015. NZ On Air will contribute $800,000 minority funding to the second series.

The judging panel for the second season saw Husband and Wife Duo, Teddy Sinclair (then known as Natalia Kills) and Willy Moon join original judges Stan Walker and Melanie Blatt. Dominic Bowden returned to host season two. Again in season two, judges retreat went international with the help of celebrity guests. Blatt was assisted by Nicole Appleton and travelled to Pattaya. Walker was assisted by Ginny Blackmore and travelled to Bangkok. Moon was assisted by former New Zealand's Got Talent judge, Jason Kerrison and travelled to Karaka and Kills was assisted by former X Factor New Zealand contestant, Benny Tipene and travelled to Titirangi. On 15 March 2015 during the first live episode of The X Factor, Teddy Sinclair and Willy Moon bullied and verbally attacked a contestant, Joe Irvine. The next day, several hours before that day's episode aired, it was announced that the two judges had been fired from the series. That nights episode saw only Walker and Blatt attend the panel. Kills and Moon were replaced by kiwi-born, I am Giant drummer - Shelton Woolwright and X Factor Australia judge, Natalie Bassingthwaighte. The series was won by Bassingthwaighte's contestant, Beau Monga. Nyssa Collins placed second and Brendon Thomas and the Vibes followed in third.


In March 2015, it was announced that NZ on Air would not provide any funding for future series, making a third series less likely. In October 2015, Mediaworks confirmed that it would not be producing a third series of The X Factor in 2016. Mediaworks would not say whether the series would return in 2017, however they did note that the series usually ran once every 2 years.

Selection process

There are five stages to the competition:

  • Stage 1: Pre-auditions (these auditions decide who will sing in front of the judges)
  • Stage 2: Judges' auditions
  • Stage 3: Bootcamp - Six-Chair Challenge
  • Stage 4: Judges' retreats
  • Stage 5: Live shows (finals)
  • Pre-auditions in front of the show's producers are held in towns and cities across New Zealand. The successful auditionees chosen by the producers are invited back to the last set of auditions held in front of the judges and a live studio audience in Auckland. From the judges' auditions and the second-chance Fast Ford Boot Camp (series one only), successful contestants then progress to the bootcamp round. As of series two, the bootcamp included a live studio audience and used a six-seat challenge to choose the contestants to progress to the judges retreats' round. At the retreats, contestants are divided into the four categories: Boys, Girls, Over-25s and Groups, and each category is assigned one of the judges as a mentor. Each judge then selects their top three contestants which make up the final 12 and progress to the live shows. In the first series, one additional wildcard contestant was selected by public vote from four previously unsuccessful contestants from judges retreats, making the final 13.

    The live shows consist of two weekly live shows, the first featuring the contestants' performances and the second revealing the results of the public voting, culminating in one act being eliminated each week. In the initial live performance shows, each act performs one song (two songs during the semi-final and grand final shows) in front of the judges and a studio audience. The acts usually sing over a pre-recorded backing track, and backup dancers are commonly featured as well as stage props. Acts occasionally accompany themselves on guitar or piano. Each week has a different theme; each act's song is chosen according to the theme. After each act has performed, the judges comment on their performance. Heated disagreements, usually involving judges defending their acts against criticism, are a regular feature of the show. Once all the acts have performed, the phone lines open and the viewing public vote on which act they want to keep in the competition.

    The results are announced during the live results show the following day. The two acts that received the lowest number of votes perform again in the "final showdown", and the judges vote on which of the two to send home. If the judges vote is a tie, the showdown goes to deadlock and the act with the lowest number of votes is eliminated from the competition. The live results shows also feature a number of celebrity guest performers.

    Series overview

    To date, two series have been broadcast, as summarised below.

         Contestant in (or mentor of) "Boys" category
         Contestant in (or mentor of) "Girls" category
         Contestant in (or mentor of) "Over 25s" category
         Contestant in (or mentor of) "Groups" category


    Judges and hosts

    Dominic Bowden hosted Season 1 and 2 of The X Factor.

    The first series' judging panel was composed of New Zealand-born, UK-based singer-songwriter Daniel Bedingfield, All Saints member Melanie Blatt, New Zealand singer-songwriter Ruby Frost as well as Australian-born Maori and Australian Idol winner Stan Walker. Walker and Blatt returned as judges in the second series, joined by new judges New Zealand-born singer Willy Moon and his wife, English singer Natalia Kills. However, Moon and Kills were sacked from their roles as judges after the two humiliated a contestant. They were replaced by Australian X Factor judge Natalie Bassingthwaighte and drummer Shelton Woolright.

    Judges' categories and their finalists

    In each series, after the audition process, each judge is allocated a category to mentor. Throughout the mentoring process each judge will choose three acts to progress to the live finals in that specified team. The table below shows, for each series, which category each judge is allocated and which acts he or she put through to the live finals.

         – Winning judge/category. Winners are in bold, eliminated contestants in small font.

    The X Factor discography

    The discography of The X Factor consists of music releases from contestants of the show. While some contestants have been signed to record labels, others have released their music independently. Recordings of contestants' weekly performances from The X Factor live shows have been released onto the iTunes Store since the second series, and a number of those performances have charted on the NZ Singles Chart.

    Benny Tipene is the most successful act to emerge from The X Factor NZ so far, he is the only act to chart internatiobally


  • The first series enjoyed strong ratings with an average audience of 485,000, a significantly high audience number for TV3. The first series also had strong online engagement, with over 120,000 Facebook fans and up to 70,000 people actively discussing the show. Every episode trended on Twitter, with #xfactornz sometimes trending internationally. The show's site at has over 6.3 million page impressions, with over 886,000 streams of full episodes and over 844,000 streams of individual song performances. The grand final decider was watched by a cumulative audience of 1,326,000, with 553,976 votes cast to decide the winner. Overall 3,285,500 New Zealanders (79.7% of the population) watched the first series at one point.
  • The second series was significantly down in ratings from the first. An average of 343,280 people watched the premiere of the second series whilst over 467,000 people tuned in to watch the premiere of the first series; this is a 26% drop in viewers, however by the end of the first week viewership had increased by 10%. On average over 1.3 million people watched the first week of the series. The Grand Final Decided was watched by an average audience of 359,910, down 39% from the Grand Final of the first series. Overall the second series had an average viewership of 328,000, down 18%.
  • Controversy and criticism

    During the first live show of the second series, judges Natalia Kills and her husband Willy Moon verbally attacked and ridiculed a contestant, Joe Irvine, resulting in an audible backlash from the audience and fellow judge Melanie Blatt, who later described Kills as "a twat" on social media for her behaviour. The following day, MediaWorks received several complaints from viewers and the major sponsors of the show; McDonald's and 2degrees. It was later announced by the show's producers that both Kills and Moon had been immediately removed from the program. The results night aired with only Walker and Blatt in attendance at the judging panel.

    The Xtra Factor

    The Xtra Factor is a companion show that is broadcast on FOUR immediately after The X Factor.


    The X Factor (New Zealand TV series) Wikipedia

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