London, May 11 : Simon Cowell wants his pals Telly duo Geordies Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly, popularly known as Ant and Dec, to take over as hosts of his American Idol show.
The entry of the pair in one of America's biggest reality shows means that they would have to face the biggest TV audience in the world - more than 150 million viewers in 18 countries.
"Simon believes Ant and Dec will become an overnight sensation. He ranks them the best presenters around and he's determined to help them break into the US," The Daily Star quoted a source, as saying.
The chances of McPartlin and Donnelly to join could come in the next two or three months when current show host Ryan Seacrest is expected to take over a top US talk show from veteran host Larry King.
Cowell is looking forward to the change also because he is not happy with figures for the seventh series of the show that have slumped 7 percent to 29 million.
Last month, there was an all-time low of just 23.3million for one of the broadcasts.
"He's been trying to beg and bully Fox TV bosses to give the Idol formula a massive shake-up," the source said.
"Now the opportunity has fallen into his lap with Ryan's impending departure and he'll be able to make good on his promise to help his buddies.
"Simon says they can provide Idol with the boost it needs to recapture viewers and increase the ratings," the source added.
The news would have been music to the pair's ears after two phone-in scandals in Britain and huge US opposition to their planned American game show Wanna Bet?