Simon Cowell is a genius at discovering pop groups, and don’t you forget it.
The sassy X Factor judge is bringing in the big guns, British boy band and pop culture phenom One Direction, to perform on Thursday’s X Factor USA results show. The band rose to fame after finishing in third place on Cowell’s X Factor UK in 2010.
“Having come from the UK X Factor, we can’t wait to perform on the U.S. stage – it’s going to be a great night,” said group member Zayn Malik in a statement. Added Niall Horan, “It’ll be the first time we’ve performed in front of ‘Uncle Si’ since we were on UK X Factor. So, hopefully we make him proud.”
Following their run on the TV competition series, One Direction was promptly signed to Cowell’s Syco Records in Great Britain and to Columbia Records in North America. In March 2012, the band made history as the first UK group to have their debut album, Up All Night, enter the Billboard 200 chart at No. 1.
This season on X Factor USA, Cowell has been tasked with mentoring the groups category. He has repeatedly used the platform to remind viewers and contestants that he has enjoyed tremendous success developing superstar groups in the past. Among them: One Direction and Il Divo.
On Wednesday’s live show, Cowell will place Emblem3, Lyric 145 and the soon-to-be-renamed 1432 (formerly known as LYLAS) into battle, with one group facing elimination during Thursday’s broadcast.
Following One Direction’s performance, hosts Khloe Kardashian and Mario Lopez will reveal the results of America’s votes.
X Factor airs Wednesday and Thursday on Fox at 8 p.m. ET/PT.