The X Factor (U.S. season 3)

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The X Factor
Season 3
Broadcast fromSeptember 11, 2013 (2013-09-11) – December 19, 2013 (2013-12-19)
JudgesSimon Cowell
Demi Lovato
Kelly Rowland
Paulina Rubio
Host(s)Mario Lopez
Alex & Sierra
Song"Say Something"
Genre(s)Indie pop, indie folk, folk pop, pop
Jeff Gutt
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The X Factor
Season 3
Broadcast fromSeptember 11, 2013 (2013-09-11) – December 19, 2013 (2013-12-19)
JudgesSimon Cowell
Demi Lovato
Kelly Rowland
Paulina Rubio
Host(s)Mario Lopez
Alex & Sierra
Song"Say Something"
Genre(s)Indie pop, indie folk, folk pop, pop
Jeff Gutt

The third and for now final season of the American music competition television show The X Factor premiered on Fox on September 11, 2013 and ended on December 19, 2013.[1] This season was hosted by Mario Lopez. Simon Cowell and Demi Lovato returned to the judging panel, while Kelly Rowland and Paulina Rubio joined the panel as replacements for the departing judges.

Producer auditions began on March 6, 2013, in Los Angeles, and ended on May 4, 2013, in Denver. The judges auditions, which are televised, began on May 21, 2013, in Charleston, and ended on July 12, 2013, in Los Angeles. New for this season is the removal of the boot camp and judges' houses rounds of the competition which have been replaced with a new middle section, more reminiscent of the live shows.

On December 19, 2013, Alex & Sierra won the show, as mentored by Cowell. On February 7, 2014, Cowell announced his departure from the show which was followed by Fox announcing that it was not going to be renewing The X Factor for a fourth season.[2]

Judges and hosts[edit]

On October 22, 2012, it was announced that The X Factor would be returning for a third season,[3] with Simon Cowell confirmed to be returning.[4] On December 14, 2012, L.A. Reid announced he would not return to the show for its third season, as he wished to refocus his work on his record company, Epic Records.[5] Britney Spears stated her intentions on returning to the show for its third season,[6] but it was confirmed on January 11, 2013, that she would not be returning, in order to focus on her music career.[7]

Following the conclusion of season two, Demi Lovato questioned whether she would return for another season, or instead focus on her own career as a performer, stating, "I have no idea what’s gonna happen next season, and I don't think anybody does."[8] On March 28, 2013, it was confirmed that Lovato would return. On April 22, it was confirmed by Fox that Mario Lopez would be returning to host season three, along with the news of Khloé Kardashian not returning as co-host.[9] Cowell confirmed via his Twitter account that the full judging panel will be announced on May 20, 2013, with auditions beginning the next day.[10] On that same day, Fox confirmed that Destiny's Child member and one-time The X Factor UK judge Kelly Rowland, and Mexican singer and former La Voz... México judge Paulina Rubio had been hired to replace Spears and Reid.[11] On December 19, 2013, Lovato announced that she was leaving the show in order to focus on her music career,[12] just two months before the show was officially cancelled by Fox on February 7, 2014.

Selection process[edit]


The X Factor (U.S. season 3) is located in USA
New Orleans
New Orleans
Los Angeles
Los Angeles
Long Island
Long Island
Cities where auditions were held.

In addition to having online auditions, it was announced at the conclusion of season 2 that auditions for season 3 would be held throughout the country in Charleston, South Carolina; Denver, Colorado; Long Island, New York; Los Angeles, California and New Orleans, Louisiana. On the "Registration and Audition Rules" document[13] on The X Factor '​s website about the auditions, it was announced where the auditions were going to be taking place.

Summary of auditions[14]
CityAuditions datesVenue
Los Angeles, CaliforniaMarch 6, 2013July 10–12, 2013Galen Center
New Orleans, LouisianaApril 14, 2013June 11–12, 2013Lakefront Arena
Charleston, South CarolinaMarch 19, 2013May 21–22, 2013North Charleston Coliseum
Long Island, New YorkApril 25, 2013June 19–21, 2013Nassau Coliseum
Denver, ColoradoMay 14, 2013June 30 – July 2, 2013Denver Coliseum

Four-chair challenge[edit]

For this season of The X Factor, Cowell confirmed that the boot camp and judges' houses sections of the competition, which traditionally followed the audition rounds, had been dropped and replaced with a brand new stage called "The Four-Chair challenge". Speaking on the change, he said "It [boot camp and Judges' houses] was the one element of the show I wasn't happy with, and it looked too similar to what everybody else is doing." He went on to describe the new "middle section" as "really dramatic, very tough on us and the contestants, and very high pressure", and compared the new round as similar to the live shows.[15]

This season, the categories did not follow the age-based format from season two but rather the format from season one: Boys, Girls, Over 25s and Groups. Rowland mentored Over 25s, Lovato the Girls, Rubio the Boys, and for the second season in a row, Cowell mentored the Groups.[16]

The four-chair challenge episodes were broadcast on two 2-hour Wednesdays and two 1-hour Thursdays shows on October 2, 3, 9 and 10.


     – Contestant was immediately eliminated after performance without switch
     – Contestant was switched out later in the competition and eventually eliminated
     – Contestant was not switched out and made the final four of their own category
Contestants performances on the four-chair challenge
EpisodeCategory (mentor)ActOrderSong[17][18][19][20]Mentor's decisionSwitched with
Episode 7
(October 2)
Over 25s (Rowland)Victoria Carriger1"Make You Feel My Love"Put in chair 1
Kristine Mirelle2"Oops!... I Did It Again"Put in chair 2
Jeff Gutt3"Amazing Grace"Put in chair 3
Rachel Potter4"Irreplaceable"Put in chair 4
Lorie Moore5"I'll Make Love to You"Put in chair 2Kristine Mirelle
Allison Davis6"Tik Tok" / "Push It"Eliminated
Jeff Brinkman7"Without You"Put in chair 1Victoria Carriger
Denny Smith8"In the Midnight Hour"Eliminated
James Kenney9"Lean on Me"Put in chair 1Jeff Brinkman
Lillie McCloud10"A House Is Not a Home"Put in chair 2Lorie Moore
Girls (Lovato)Bree Randall11"Glad You Came"Put in chair 1
Khaya Cohen12"Locked Out of Heaven"Put in chair 2
Jamie Pineda13"Don't Speak"Put in chair 3
Ashly Williams14"I Don't Want to Miss a Thing"Put in chair 4
Episode 8
(October 3)
Simone Torres15"A Change Is Gonna Come"Put in chair 1Bree Randall
Danie Geimer16"Georgia on My Mind"Put in chair 1Simone Torres
Rylie Brown17"Angels"Eliminated
Primrose Martin18"Blame It on the Boogie"Eliminated
Rion Paige19"I Won't Let Go"Put in chair 4Ashly Williams
Ellona Santiago20"Clarity"Put in chair 3Jamie Pineda
Episode 9
(October 9)
Boys (Rubio)Al Calderon21"Call Me Maybe"Put in chair 1
Isaiah Alston22"The Greatest Love of All"Eliminated
Isaac Tauaefa23"Bubbly"Eliminated
Carlos Guevara24"Ain't No Sunshine"Put in chair 2
Stone Martin25"Torn"Put in chair 3
Chase Goehring26"Airplanes"Put in chair 4
Tim Olstad27"The Climb"Put in chair 3Stone Martin
Carlito Olivero28"Dreaming of You"Put in chair 4Chase Goehring
Timmy Thames29"The New Girl in Town"Put in chair 3Tim Olstad
Tim OlstadN/AN/A (reinstated by mentor)1Put in chair 1Al Calderon
Josh Levi30"I Can't Make You Love Me"Put in chair 3Timmy Thames
Groups (Cowell)Girls United31"Yeah 3x"Put in chair 1
Wild Thingz32"Party Rock Anthem"Put in chair 2
Glamour33"When I'm Gone"Put in chair 3
Restless Road34"Somebody Like You"Put in chair 4
Episode 10
(October 10)
Sweet Suspense35"Wishing on a Star"Put in chair 2Wild Thingz
Yellow House Canyon36"Hell on Heels"Eliminated
Forever in Your Mind37"Lovebug"Put in chair 3Glamour
Good News38"Landslide"Eliminated
Alex & Sierra39"You're the One That I Want"Put in chair 1Girls United
RoXxy Montana40"Man in the Mirror"Put in chair 3Forever in Your Mind

^1 Rubio initially switched out Tim Olstad for Timmy Thames, but after some consideration brought him back and instead switched out Al Calderon.


The final 16 finalists were confirmed as follows;


     – Winner
     – Runner-up
     – Third place
Category (mentor)Acts
Boys (Rubio)Carlos GuevaraJosh LeviCarlito OliveroTim Olstad
Girls (Lovato)Khaya CohenDanie GeimerRion PaigeEllona Santiago
Over 25s (Rowland)Jeff GuttJames KenneyLillie McCloudRachel Potter
Groups (Cowell)Alex & SierraRestless RoadRoXxy MontanaSweet Suspense

Live shows[edit]

The first two hour live show aired on a special Tuesday time slot on October 29; which followed the same format as the first season with each of the judges narrowing their number of acts down to three, without a public vote. The public vote then started with the following performance and results shows starting November 6, which aired on Wednesdays and Thursdays respectively. As with previous seasons, each live show had a different theme. The live final took place in on December 18 and 19. Cowell had also said on Twitter that there may be a wildcard this season.[21] The leaderboard that showed which act had received the most public votes did not return.[citation needed]

Musical guests[edit]

Each results show featured musical performances from at least two artists. There was no guest performer on the first result show. Selena Gomez was supposed to perform on the second result show, but was postponed to third result show night[22] which featured a performance from season 2 finalist Fifth Harmony.[23] One Direction performed on the third results show.[24] Michael Bublé performed on the fifth performance show,[25] then again on the fifth results show alongside judge Demi Lovato.[26] Emblem3 and Little Mix performed on the sixth results show,[27] while Enrique Iglesias performed during the seventh results show.[28] Paulina Rubio,[29] Mary J. Blige, Lea Michele,[30] Leona Lewis, Pitbull and One Direction performed on the finale.[31]

Results summary[edit]

Color key
    Contestant did not face the public vote
    Contestant was eliminated by their mentor (no public vote or final showdown)
    Contestant was in the bottom three and had to sing again in the final showdown
    Contestant was in the bottom three but received the fewest votes and was immediately eliminated
    Contestant received the fewest public votes and was immediately eliminated (no final showdown)
    Contestant received the most public votes
Weekly results per contestant
ContestantWeek 1Week 23Week 3Week 4Week 5Week 6Week 7Week 8
Alex & SierraSavedN/A1st51st51st51st51st51st5Winner
Jeff GuttSavedN/ASafeSafeSafeSafeSafeSafeRunner-up
Carlito OliveroSavedN/ASafeSafeBottom threeSafeBottom threeSafe3rd
Restless RoadSavedN/ASafeSafeSafeSafeSafe4thEliminated (week 7)
Rion PaigeSavedN/ASafeSafeSafe6thBottom threeEliminated (week 6)
Ellona SantiagoSavedN/ASafeSafeSafeSafe6thEliminated (week 6)
Josh LeviNot saved2N/ASafeSafeSafe7thEliminated (week 5)
Lillie McCloudSavedN/ASafeSafeSafe8thEliminated (week 5)
Tim OlstadSavedN/ASafeSafeBottom threeEliminated (week 4)
Khaya CohenSavedN/ASafeBottom three10thEliminated (week 4)
Rachel PotterSavedN/ASafeBottom threeEliminated (week 3)
Sweet SuspenseSavedN/ASafe12thEliminated (week 3)
Carlos GuevaraSavedN/A13thEliminated (week 3)
RoXxy MontanaNot savedEliminated (week 1)
James KenneyNot savedEliminated (week 1)
Danie GeimerNot savedEliminated (week 1)
Final showdownNone1None3None3Cohen,
No final showdown or judges' votes; results were based on public votes alone
Judges voted toSaveEliminate
Rowland's votePotter,
Lovato's voteSantiago,
Rubio's voteOlivero,
Cowell's voteRestless Road,
Alex & Sierra,
Sweet Suspense
EliminatedDanie Geimer
by Lovato
Carlos Guevara
Public vote
to save
Sweet Suspense
Public vote
to save
Khaya Cohen
Public vote
to save
Lillie McCloud
Public vote
to save
Ellona Santiago
Public vote
to save
Restless Road
Public vote
to save
Carlito Olivero
Public vote
to win
Josh Levi
by Rubio
James Kenney
by Rowland
Rachel Potter
3 of 4 votes
Tim Olstad
3 of 3 votes
Josh Levi
2 of 4 votes
Rion Paige
3 of 4 votes
Jeff Gutt
Public vote
to win
RoXxy Montana
by Cowell

Live show details[edit]

Week 1 (October 29)[edit]

Contestants performances on the first live show
Ellona Santiago1"Till the World Ends"Safe
Danie Geimer2"Wrecking Ball"Eliminated
Rion Paige3"Skyscraper"Safe
Khaya Cohen4"Mercy"Safe
Josh Levi5"Only Girl (in the World)"Eliminated
Carlos Guevara6"Don't You Worry Child"Safe
Carlito Olivero7"Maria Maria"Safe
Tim Olstad8"Always"Safe
Lillie McCloud9"When a Man Loves a Woman"Safe
Jeff Gutt10"Try"Safe
Rachel Potter11"I Hope You Dance"Safe
James Kenney12"Red"Eliminated
RoXxy Montana13"Royals"Eliminated
Sweet Suspense14"I Love It"Safe
Alex & Sierra15"Blurred Lines"Safe
Restless Road16"Roar"Safe

There was no public vote in the first week. Instead, each of the judges selected one of their own acts to eliminate.

Judges' decisions to eliminate[32]

Week 2 (November 6/7)[edit]

November 6

One of the four acts that did not face the public vote in week 1 and was eliminated by their mentor was reinstated to the show as the judges felt that the act "deserves a second shot". The reinstated act was announced as Josh Levi.[42]

Contestants performances on the second live show (Wednesday)
Josh Levi1"Who's Lovin' You"
Rachel Potter2"This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)"
Carlos Guevara3"What's Going On"
Restless Road4"Easy"
Ellona Santiago5"Baby Love"
Jeff Gutt6"Say You, Say Me"
Alex & Sierra7"I Heard It Through the Grapevine"
Khaya Cohen8"My Girl"
Carlito Olivero9"Stop! In the Name of Love"
Lillie McCloud10"All In Love Is Fair"
Sweet Suspense11"You Keep Me Hangin' On"
Rion Paige12"Ain't No Mountain High Enough"
Tim Olstad13"I'll Be There"
November 7

Owing to graphics error in which incorrect voting numbers were displayed on screen during the performance recap, there was no elimination this week, instead all the acts performed their "Save Me" songs on Thursday night and a public re-vote was conducted after the show. The results were announced the following week, at the start of the live show on Wednesday night.[33]

Selena Gomez was going to perform her single "Slow Down" but due to graphics issues, she performed on the second night in week 3.[citation needed]

Contestants performances on the second live show (Thursday)
Josh Levi1"Stay"
Rachel Potter2"Anyway"
Carlos Guevara3"Cannonball"
Restless Road4"Don't You Wanna Stay"
Ellona Santiago5"Titanium"
Jeff Gutt6"In the Air Tonight"
Alex & Sierra7"Give Me Love"
Khaya Cohen8"Distant Dreamer"
Carlito Olivero9"If You're Not the One"
Lillie McCloud10"Who Wants to Live Forever"
Sweet Suspense11"That Should Be Me"
Rion Paige12"Born This Way"
Tim Olstad13"I Believe I Can Fly"

Week 3 (November 13/14)[edit]

Carlos Guevara, the act that received the fewest votes from the public re-vote in week 2, was eliminated at the start of the November 13 episode.[34] He would have performed "Mad World".[34] Starting from week three, two acts will be eliminated from each results show until week five. The three acts with the fewest public votes will be announced and then the act with the fewest votes will be automatically eliminated. The remaining two acts will then perform in the final showdown and face the judges' votes.[citation needed]

Contestants performances on the third live show
Carlos GuevaraN/AN/A (already eliminated)Eliminated
Lillie McCloud1"Ain't Nobody"Safe
Carlito Olivero2"Rhythm Is Gonna Get You"Safe
Rion Paige3"We Belong"Safe
Sweet Suspense4"Mickey"Eliminated
Tim Olstad5"Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now)"Safe
Khaya Cohen6"Borderline"Bottom three
Restless Road7"Footloose"Safe
Rachel Potter8"Alone"Bottom three
Ellona Santiago9"I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)"Safe
Josh Levi10"Straight Up"Safe
Jeff Gutt11"(I Just) Died in Your Arms"Safe
Alex & Sierra12"Addicted to Love"Safe
Final showdown details[35]
Khaya Cohen1"Don't Give Up on Me"Safe
Rachel Potter2"From This Moment On"Eliminated
Judges' votes to eliminate[35]

Week 4 (November 20/21)[edit]

Contestants performances on the fourth live show
Jeff Gutt1"Bohemian Rhapsody"Safe
Tim Olstad2"Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word"Bottom three
Khaya Cohen3"Let It Be"Eliminated
Josh Levi4"Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)"Safe
Alex & Sierra5"Best Song Ever"Safe
Rion Paige6"Your Song"Safe
Carlito Olivero7"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"Bottom three
Lillie McCloud8"This Woman's Work"Safe
Ellona Santiago9"Burn"Safe
Restless Road10"Fix You"Safe
Final showdown details[36]
Tim Olstad1"You Raise Me Up"Eliminated
Carlito Olivero2"Beneath Your Beautiful"Safe
Judges' votes to eliminate[50]

Week 5 (November 27/28)[edit]

Contestants performances on the fifth live show
Rion Paige1"Swingin'"Bottom three
Restless Road2"Life Is a Highway"Safe
Jeff Gutt3"Feeling Good"Safe
Josh Levi4"Treasure"Bottom three
Carlito Olivero5"La Copa de Vida" / "María"Safe
Alex & Sierra6"I Knew You Were Trouble"Safe
Lillie McCloud7"Summertime"Eliminated
Ellona Santiago8"Mamma Knows Best"Safe
Final showdown details[37]
Rion Paige1"Perfect"Safe
Josh Levi2"When I Was Your Man"Eliminated
Judges' votes to eliminate[54]

With the acts in the bottom two receiving two votes each, the result was deadlocked and reverted to the earlier public vote. Levi was eliminated as the act with the fewest public votes.[54]

Week 6 (December 4/5)[edit]

For the first time this season, each act performed two songs.

Contestants' performances on the sixth live show
ActOrderFirst song[57]OrderSecond song[57]Result[38]
Restless Road1"Red"7"Wake Me Up"Safe
Rion Paige2"See You Again"8"Glass"Bottom three
Jeff Gutt3"Without You"9"Daniel"Safe
Ellona Santiago4"Applause"10"If I Were a Boy"Eliminated
Alex & Sierra5"Say My Name"11"Say Something"Safe
Carlito Olivero6"Let's Get Loud"12"Stand by Me"Bottom three
Final showdown details[38]
Rion Paige1"The House That Built Me"Eliminated
Carlito Olivero2"You Make Me Wanna..."Safe
Judges' votes to eliminate[58]

Week 7: Semi-final (December 11/12)[edit]

On December 4, the song choices for the public were revealed.[59]

Choices for viewers' choice week
ActSong choices[59]Result[61]
Alex & Sierra"Hold On, We're Going Home"Not chosen
"Little Talks"Chosen
"Troublemaker"Not chosen
Carlito Olivero"Boyfriend"Chosen
"Hasta Ayer"Not chosen
"Promise"Not chosen
Ellona Santiago"Love Me Again"N/A (already eliminated)
"Who You Are"N/A (already eliminated)
"You Got the Love"N/A (already eliminated)
Jeff Gutt"Creep"Not chosen
"Wonderwall"Not chosen
Restless Road"Hey Brother"Not chosen
"It Goes Like This"Not chosen
"That's My Kind of Night"Chosen
Rion Paige"Girl on Fire"N/A (already eliminated)
"So Small"N/A (already eliminated)
"Umbrella"N/A (already eliminated)
Contestants' performances on the seventh live show
ActOrderFirst song[62]OrderSecond song[62]Result[39]
Carlito Olivero1"Boyfriend"5"I Need to Know"Safe
Restless Road2"That's My Kind of Night"6"Wanted"Eliminated
Alex & Sierra3"Little Talks"7"Gravity"Safe
Jeff Gutt4"Hallelujah"8"Demons"Safe

The semi-final did not feature a final showdown and instead the act with the fewest public votes, Restless Road, was automatically eliminated.[39] The top three acts each then performed a victory song of their choice after they were announced safe, with Olivero performing "Suavemente", Alex & Sierra performing "Let Her Go", and Gutt performing "Open Arms".[39]

Week 8: Final (December 18/19)[edit]

The final consisted of two two-hour episodes on December 18 and 19.

December 18
Contestants' performances on the eighth live show
ActOrderFirst song[63]OrderSecond song (duet)[63][64]OrderThird song[63]
Carlito Olivero1"Impossible"4"Stand by Me" (with Prince Royce)7"Maria Maria"
Alex & Sierra2"Give Me Love"5"Bleeding Love" (with Leona Lewis)8"Say Something"
Jeff Gutt3"Dream On"6"Iris" (with John Rzeznik)9"Creep"
December 19
Contestants' performances on the final live show
Carlito Olivero1"Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)"Third place
Jeff Gutt2"O Holy Night"Runner-up
Alex & Sierra3"All I Want for Christmas Is You"Winner


U.S. Nielsen ratings[edit]

Ep. #EpisodeAirdateViewers
1Auditions 1September 116.452.2/723[66]
2Auditions 2September 126.872.2/722[67]
3Auditions 3September 186.622.2/724[68]
4Auditions 4September 196.432.0/724[69]
5Auditions 5September 257.732.5/727[70]
6Auditions 6September 266.472.1/628[71]
7Four-Chair challenge 1October 27.802.4/737[72]
8Four-Chair challenge 2October 37.132.0/628[73]
9Four-Chair challenge 3October 97.252.2/636[74]
10Four-Chair challenge 4October 106.492.0/623[75]
11Finalists chosen (Top 12)October 29note 14.901.5/435[76]
12Meet the Top 12October 313.250.8/358[77]
13Top 13 performNovember 64.541.5/42 (Tie)4 (Tie)[78]
14Top 13 Acts Get Another ChanceNovember 73.671.2/449[79]
15Top 12 performNovember 135.781.7/524[80]
16Live results 1November 145.181.3/42 (Tie)3 (Tie)[81]
17Top 10 performNovember 205.511.7/534 (Tie)[82]
18Live results 2November 215.881.6/522[83]
19Top 8 performNovember 274.851.2/42[84]
20Live results 3November 283.751.0/33[85]
21Top 6 performDecember 45.411.4/44[86]
22Live results 4December 54.931.4/43[87]
23Top 4 performDecember 114.971.4/4
24Live results 5December 124.901.2/4
25Top 3 performDecember 185.041.3/4[88]
26Winner announcedDecember 196.221.7/5

^1 Due to the 2013 MLB World Series running past October 28, the first live show of the season aired on October 29 to make room for Wednesday's potential deciding game.[89]


Voting numbers graphic error[edit]

Due to graphic errors made in the top 13 round of the live shows regarding voting, all voting results posted in that episode were invalidated, and the contestants sang once more in the November 7 show, with the results revealed on November 13.[90]

Demi Lovato's tribute video[edit]

On December 19, 2013, during the finale a segment featuring judge Lovato had aired. The segment showed Lovato drinking a green-colored beverage called "Annoying Juice" throughout the duration of the season, poking fun at Lovato's "annoying" relationship with show creator Cowell.

The next day, Lovato expressed her frustration with The X Factor producers for mocking her drinking addiction that she openly struggled with.[91]


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External links[edit]