Dermot O’Leary says The X Factor is “still punching above its weight” as the talent show was once again nominated for a National Television Award, despite falling ratings.
The latest series of the programme, created by Simon Cowell’s Syco TV, hit record lows since first airing 15 years ago.
Despite the figures, it was announced the show would be continuing to 2022. Something that was not a surprise to long-time host O’Leary.
Speaking to the Press Association, he said: “Every year everyone talks about it, and every year The X Factor consolidates up to about eight million.
“You try launching a show with eight million now that’s on for four months of the year – it’s still punching above its weight.
“We’ve been on air 15 years now and I’ve done 11 of those and you just see how the show evolves, and how people evolve watching the show.
“You have to evolve with that. And I think that’s up to us as programme makers, to make that change, and the channel. That’s just the way of the world.
“I think for a show that still gets catch-up figures of seven or eight million is still doing great business.”
Having hosted the National Television Awards since 2010, this year marks O’Leary’s 10th occasion he has helmed at London’s O2.
Although he is not among the nominations for Best Host, dynamic duo Ant and Dec will be looking to win for the 18th year in a row in the category against Phillip Schofield, Holly Willoughby and Bradley Walsh.
O’Leary added: “I don’t think the guys are going to be there, I don’t know that yet – I’m not entirely sure.
“I think the most important thing is Ant’s filming. And the only reason Ant’s filming is if he’s
confident and happy and healthy.
“That’s by far the most important thing.”