Britney Spears. (FilmMagic)
The “Scream and Shout” pop star has reportedly quit as a judge on Simon Cowell’s singing competition so she can instead focus on her own music career – but an insider tells omg! it was the immense stress that made her walk away from another season … and another $15 million paycheck.
“Britney has been really stressed and overworked lately,” reveals the source. “Everyone was worrying about her. She was definitely at the end of her rope. She just can’t handle stress, and the people around her don’t want to see another epic breakdown.”
Although Fox has yet to officially comment on Spears’ fate on the show, the network’s chairman, Kevin Reilly, did say: "I think Britney did a really good job. Maybe some people were waiting for more drastic displays of some nature that never came, so for those expecting that, it didn’t happen … She’s just an interesting figure who’s lived a unique life, and I thought she brought some of that.”
Spears, 32, was clearly struggling with her duties on “The X Factor” even before her first day on the job. At a press conference on May 15 to announce that she and Demi Lovato had joined the show, the mom-of-two was a jittery mess onstage and her nails were bloody from obvious picking.
Then on the very first day of auditions in Austin, Texas, Spears walked off the set after a contestant butchered her song, “Hold It Against Me.” But the show went on. Four more singing hopefuls auditioned in front of Cowell, L.A. Reid, and Lovato … and Spears’ empty seat until producers finally called it a day. At the time, Fox insisted that Spears had merely gone on a bathroom break.
But just before the show officially premiered on September 12, Cowell revealed there was more to it.
"No one is going to admit that on the first day your highest paid star after 20 minutes has walked off set," the former “American Idol” judge told TMZ Live. “It doesn’t look great. I kind of guessed that the first day was going to be difficult for her. It’s a lot to take in. It’s a lot of pressure, and she did have a moment on the first day where she said to me, ‘I’m not sure I can do this.’”
Although Cowell added that Spears grew more confident after a pep talk, she never fully seemed relaxed while giving her critiques on the show.
Do you think it's a good decision for Britney to be walking away from "X Factor"?
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