September 13, 2012


Why Did 'X Factor' Cut Britney Spears' Former Duet Partner Coming Out?

Kevin Winter
Kevin Winter

When this season's premiere episode of The X Factor was taped back in June, a former singing partner of Britney Spears reportedly came out to her during his audition. But based on what Fox broadcast of their exchange, you'd never know it.

When Don Philip—a 32-year-old singer from the Bronx—turned up at the San Francisco audition for The X Factor, Britney Spears recognized him immediately. Despite being a virtual unknown, Philip actually duetted with Spears on a cut from her 1999 debut album …Baby One More Time called "I Will Still Love You."

According to People, Philip's emotional audition in San Francisco found him coming out to Spears. "I didn't think you thought it was okay that I am gay," he reportedly told her and the audience. To which Spears reportedly replied, "I think it is fine you are gay."

But curiously, when that audition aired during tonight's season 2 premiere of The X Factor, the part where Philip came out was excised entirely. Yes, we saw Philip's emotional reunion with Spears and his shaky audition—and his breakdown after being rejected—but his onstage revelation (and their ensuing exchange) was nowhere to be found.

"I feel through the years you've gone through a lot of hardships and battles," Spears told Philip in the broadcast. "But your voice isn't up to the standards of The X Factor." Simon Cowell, L.A. Reid and Demi Lovato agreed, and so Philip was rejected. "That was hard," Spears confided to her fellow judges while cameras cut to Philip sobbing and saying, "I saw her face and I saw that I hurt her… I'm so sorry, Britney."

Now, after seeing how his audition was edited for national broadcast, Philip is striking back at the show with some pointed remarks. "They edited the gay out of me," Philip told RumorFix. "Aren't they a reality show? Is it too real?" he asked. "It's like gay is being censored."

Take a listen to Britney's duet with Don, "I Will Still Love You," below, and let us know what you thought of Britney encountering her old singing partner.