Simon Cowell
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Simon Cowell: X Factor USA 'greatest final'

The first final of the American version of the X Factor will be the "greatest", according to the programme's creator, Simon Cowell.

Chris Rene, 28, Melanie Amaro, 19, and Josh Krajcik, 30, will battle it out for the $5m (£3.2m) recording contract prize on Wednesday.

The series has faced some controversy, with 13-year-old contestant Rachel Crow breaking down on stage after being voted out. Judges Nicole Scherzinger and Paula Abdul subsequently received death threats.

But the show has drawn an average of 12 million viewers which is less than half the number that watch Mr Cowell's previous programme, American Idol.

Speaking at a press conference, he admitted that he had been "too cocky" when he brought the UK format to America.

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