Cheryl has dismissed the idea that there is any ill-feelings between herself and the former Spice Girl, telling The Sun that they’re already having a laugh together, adding that Mel feels like “an old friend”.
She said: “I admit we are very different characters and very different people. But it works. She actually makes me laugh. Sometimes I have to stop myself laughing at her because it’s really rude - the contestants think I’m laughing at them.”
It also sounds like Mel is going to be every bit as blunt and straight to the point as she was during her brief appearance as a judge in 2012, with Cheryl praising her style of judging the auditionees, saying: “She’s quick and she’s very direct. A lot of the stuff she says I couldn’t bring myself to say. But I love that — it’s a good dynamic for the panel.”
However, she seems less keen on returning judge Louis Walsh, who she was recently reunited with after a three-year absence from ‘The X Factor’.
This year's 'X Factor' judges
Speaking about Louis - who she’d previously told Graham Norton there had been a “frosty” atmosphere around on the first day of filming - Cheryl said: “I don’t have to be near him because Mel is in the middle.”
It was even claimed ahead of the first round of auditions that Cheryl had refused to sit next to Louis on the panel, while Simon Cowell revealed earlier in the year that the former Girls Aloud star hadn’t wanted him to come back at all.
Meanwhile, it was reported recently that there’d already been some behind-the-scenes drama, with Mel telling show boss Simon straight that she had no intention of playing up to a ‘Miss Nasty’ persona on the show, and wasn’t interested in creating any unnecessary tension with Cheryl.