If there’s one judge most everyone wanted to see return to The X Factor, it was Demi Lovato, who often sparred with Simon Cowell throughout must of season 2. It was announced today that the 20-year-old pop singer will be returning for season 3.

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“I am so excited to return as a judge and mentor on The X Factor,” Demi said in a statement. “Last season was an unbelievable experience and I really enjoyed developing personal relationships with the contestants and the panel. I look forward to taking my previous experience and applying it to make this season even better!”

Simon reiterated his support for her: “I couldn’t be happier that Demi wants to come back this year. She’s a superstar in her own right and was a fantastic mentor last year. Even though she can be really, really annoying — I truly enjoyed working with her and so did the artists. I’m especially pleased she’s back, even during her world tour!”

In February, she told Extra she would like to come back, but she also wants to focus on her music as well: “I’m focusing on my music this year, so it’s going to be a lot of touring, a lot of promoting of my album. … Obviously, if they asked for me to come back, I’d say yes.”

When she joined the panel for season 2, Demi was assigned the Young Adults category to mentor — very fitting considering she’s in the same age group. She and Simon would often verbally spar with each other, but Demi was never afraid to back down from a confrontation with her boss. This decision doesn’t come as a surprise, as she was considered a fan-favorite among the judges.

With Demi returning, there are still two more spots to fill. Both L.A. Reid and Britney Spears have already announced their departures from the show, the former having done so mere weeks before a singer from his own category — Tate Stevens — won the grand prize. And with Mario Lopez also sticking around, reports surfaced in February that his hosting partner Khloe Kardashian’s contract would not be renewed, though nothing has been made official yet.

Are you excited that Demi Lovato is returning for season 3? Who else should join the judging panel? And when will we know Khloe Kardashian’s fate?

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(Image courtesy of FOX)

Jeff Dodge

Staff Writer, BuddyTV

Jeff Dodge, a graduate of Western Washington University, has been a TV news editor for many years and has had the chance to interview multiple reality show stars, including Randy Jackson, Nick Cannon, Heidi Klum, Mel B and John Cena.