Britney Spears has broken her silence on her X Factor exit, describing it as "a very difficult decision."
"I've made the very difficult decision not to return for another season," she said in a statement Friday. "I had an incredible time doing the show and I love the other judges and I am so proud of my teens but it's time for me to get back in the studio. Watching them all do their thing up on that stage every week made me miss performing so much! I can't wait to get back out there and do what I love most."
Spears, who mentored the group of teens on Season 2 of Fox's singing competition series, including runner-up Carly Rose Sonenclar, handed in her notice this week. Sources previously told TVGuide.com that she did so because she knew she was going to be fired.
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Spears was paid $15 million to appear as a judge on the show. The singer is currently recording her eighth album and is in talks to headline her own show in Las Vegas.
"She is very interested in a Vegas residency, and is in serious talks with one of the major casino groups," a source close to Spears told TVGuide.com Friday.
Are you bummed Spears is leaving? Would you catch Brit-Brit in Vegas?
Additional reporting by Natalie Abrams