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Christine Bleakely has reportedly been offered £200,000 a year by Simon Cowell to become the new host of The Xtra Factor

According to Heat, the presenter could reject an alleged £2m offer from the BBC to host a number of ITV shows, including GMTV and the X Factor spinoff.

Britain’s Got Talent judge Amanda Holden told the magazine of Bleakley: “She is fantastic. I don’t blame ITV for trying to get hold of her because she’s brilliant. We first met at a random dinner.

“Simon was invited to 10 Downing Street – it was an informal meeting with Gordon Brown – and Christine came. I just hogged her all night. I think the BBC should try to keep hold of her, but The Xtra Factor is an amazing gig.”

A TV source added: “Christine has become close to Simon over the past year. She knew getting in with him would be the key to career success.

“She made an effort to say nice things about him in the press, then she became matey with Amanda Holden – which is a stepping stone to Cowell himself.”

They added: “Now he’s offered to double her £100,000-a-year contract to take over from Holly Willoughby on The Xtra Factor… Simon has marked her out for the top and she has told friends, ‘I can be bigger than Cheryl Cole’.”

Tags assigned to this article:
Amanda HoldenChristine BleakelySimon Cowell


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