Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul

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It's official. We're now down two judges and a host.

Paula Abdul herself has confirmed the reports that she will not be returning to The X Factor for season two. Simon Cowell, who will be staying on along with L.A. Reid, has also released a statement about the recent casting changes on the Fox reality show…

"Yes, it's true; I won't be returning to The X Factor next season," Abdul says in a statement. "I've learned through my longevity in this industry that business decisions oftentimes override personal considerations. Simon and I, along with Fox and Fremantle, have been communicating about this for a while now, and I have absolute understanding of the situation. Simon is, and will remain a dear friend of mine and I've treasured my experience working this past season with my extended family at Fox and Fremantle. I want nothing more than for The X Factor to exceed ALL of their wildest dreams. This truly has been a blessing and I am most grateful."

Cowell's statement is an all-encompassing one, touching on Abdul's exit, and the release of host Steve Jones and judge Nicole Scherzinger.

"I want to say a massive thank you to Paula, Nicole and Steve for being part of The X Factor last year. We had a lot of fun making the show together and importantly, we found some real talent and stars. You do develop friendships with the people you work with and Paula, in particular, is a very close friend and I expect to be working with her on another project in the near future. I'm sure all three are going to have massive success in what they do next, but now is the time to thank them all for everything they did last year."

Scherzinger took to her Twitter to confirm her exit officially: "I wanted to let you know directly from me that it's true I won't be returning to The X Factor. Looking forward to an exciting year ahead and making great music and more! I'm grateful for the love you always give me."

Finally, just so everyone can throw their well-worded and carefully thought out statements into the mix, Mike Darnell, President of Alternative Entertainment at Fox says about Abdul not returning: "We love Paula. She is a remarkable talent and we appreciate all of her contributions. We're lucky that she is a part of the FOX family, and we look forward to working with her again soon."

Basically, it's been an X Factor bloodbath, but apparently a cordial one.

What do you guys think of Fox cleaning house? Will you miss Steve, Nicole and Paula? Or do you think it's time they dial up Mariah Carey?

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