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Demi Lovato Officially Joins ‘X Factor’ to Judge Alongside Britney Spears

Kevin Winter, Getty Images

America, meet your (somewhat) revamped ‘X Factor‘ judging panel — according to several media reports, 19-year-old singer and actress Demi Lovato will join newly-signed pop star Britney Spears, music executive L.A. Reid and series creator Simon Cowell when the talent show starts its second season.

We’ve known for a while that Spears was a lock, but Lovato competed against other heavy-hitting rumored panelists like Avril Lavigne, Janet Jackson and Mariah Carey for the final spot at the table. But with last season’s disappointing ratings, Cowell was reportedly set on having younger, hipper judges to attract the demographic that advertisers drool over.

Spears, 30, and Lovato have a lot in common — they both got their start on Disney shows, and they’ve both had well-publicized personal issues. Spears is a former Mouseketeer who had what appeared to be a full-on nervous breakdown in 2007, shaving her head in full view of paparazzi cameras and causing her father to later step in to gain legal control of her finances.

Lovato, star of the ‘Camp Rock’ movies and the Disney Channel sitcom ‘Sonny with a Chance,’ dropped out of a 2010 tour after reportedly punching a back-up dancer. She entered a treatment facility that specialized in physical and emotional issues, and later admitted she’d struggled with bulimia and self-injurious behavior, and had been diagnosed as bi-polar during her in-patient treatment.

Both ladies seem to have put their troubles behind them now, but Keith Caulfield, associate director of charts at Billboard, expressed some concerns about the fragility of the new panelists. “There can be uncontrollable moments on ‘The X Factor,’ and if things are not completely in control and things are not rehearsed, things could go wrong,” he said. “With a live show, anything can happen, and that can be very exciting but, at the same time, a little worrisome.”

Spears and Lovato are expected to be in New York on Monday afternoon for the Fox network upfront presentation that will confirm their spots on ‘X Factor.’

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