As it's now only one week until the actual X Factor actual final (scream, faint, etc), we're all feeling a touch excited – and you can bet the remaining contestants are, too. Well, they might have been until they heard what former X Factor contestant Stacey Solomon had to say about her time after the show.
The singer, who came third in the competition two years ago (Olly Murs and Joe McElderry were second and first, respectively), has spoken out about how she felt like a “puppet” after signing a contract with the show's management.
“After The X Factor I became part of a machine,” she told Fabulous magazine. “I felt like a puppet.” Stacey signed the contract while taking part in the show, and admits that she was naïve at the time. “I was given a contract and I signed it,” she said. “I'd have signed anything. They could have told me to shave my head and I'd have said, 'Pass me the razor.' I would have done anything because I was just so grateful to be there and to be given an opportunity.” It was only once she was tied in that Stacey began to feel trapped, explaining, “There were a lot of jobs that I couldn't do.”
After appearing in I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here!, Stacey was approached by PR guru Max Clifford and the pair set about freeing Stacey from her contract. It wasn't cheap, and the singer eventually had to pay thousands in legal costs. “It's lovely to have money, but it means nothing when you feel trapped somewhere you don't want to be,” she said. “I feel I've got my life back now. I can look forward to doing the things I want to do, whether it's a gig that earns me a tenner or a million pounds, I can make my own decision on it.”
Asked if she had any advice for this year's X Factor contestants, who are presumably on the verge of being offered the same sort of contract, Stacey warned, “Speak up if you're not happy with the way things are heading.”
Who do you think will be leaving The X Factor tonight? And who are you going to vote for in the final?