Simon Cowell Recalls Camila Cabello and Harry Styles' Unforgettable Auditions for The X Factor

Camila Cabello, Simon Cowell, Harry Styles
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty; Allen Berezovsky/WireImage; Dia Dipasupil/FilmMagic Camila Cabello, Simon Cowell, Harry Styles
Simon Cowell remembers the first sight of Harry Styles and Camila Cabello.
In a new interview with Extra, Cowell spoke about the careers of the superstar musicians he's helped shape through the British and American versions of The X Factor, a reality singing competition series created by former American Idol judge in 2004.
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Styles, 28, auditioned as a solo artist for The X Factor UK in 2010 - as did Zayn Malik, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne and Niall Horan, who were then all eliminated as soloists and encouraged to form a band to stay in the competition . They committed and eventually became a group titled One Direction, finishing third in the competition.
One Direction released five studio albums and scored several hits including "What Makes You Beautiful" before announcing an extended hiatus in 2015. Styles has since released three albums and scored many smash singles, including Billboard Hot 100 chart-topping "Watermelon Sugar." ' and 'How it was'.
RELATED: Harry Styles' Full X Factor UK Audition Video Reveals He Sang 'Hey, Soul Sister' for Judges First
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"I remember his audition like it was yesterday," Cowell told Extra. "He was very charming, he was very confident, he was very funny and I liked him."
"I just thought there was something... special about him," added the British entrepreneur. "You never forget those moments, and like I said, honestly, if we didn't make people's careers successful, I would never be doing these shows today."
Elsewhere in the interview, Cowell discussed Cabello, 25, also appearing as a solo artist for The X Factor U.S. in 2012. auditioned before being eliminated with an option to return as a group with fellow hopefuls Lauren Jauregui, Normani, Dinah Jane and Ally Brooke. After trying out a few names during the show, the group became known as Fifth Harmony and - also like One Direction - took third place in the competition.
Fifth Harmony then signed to Cowell's record label Syco and released three albums, spawning the hits "Worth It" and "Work From Home." Cabello left the group in 2016, ahead of the release of their third album, and has released three albums of his own, earning the #1 hits "Havana" and "Señorita."
"She wasn't supposed to be auditioning," Cowell revealed. "I happened to go backstage and saw her crying, asked her why she was crying, and she said it was too late for her to audition because she was a reserve, whatever that meant."
RELATED: Camila Cabello reflects on Fifth Harmony's 'Wild Ride' after 10th anniversary with Throwback Photo
He continued, "I said to her, 'Well, I'm one of the producers, you just got an audition.'"
Cowell also spoke at length about the superstar careers he helped start, saying their success inspires him to keep going.
"If those moments work and you see Camila today or Harry Styles, Leona Lewis, Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson, luckily there have been so many times that I've been there in that moment where her career is going to go in a completely different direction ' he told the outlet. "If those things hadn't happened, there would be no point in doing the shows."
Simon Cowell
A&R manager
Camila cabello
American singer
Harry Styles
singer-songwriter

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