Britain's Got Talent's prize money has reportedly been slashed to just half of last year's £500,000.
Last year Simon Cowell stumped up £250,000 of the prize out of his own pocket, but this year he's keeping his wallet firmly closed, according to The Sun.
A show source told the paper: "Half a million was a massive prize - one of the biggest on telly. But it was only supposed to be for one year."
Simon, 53, rejoined the ITV talent contest as a judge last year after the 2011 series was panned by fans, and brought with him a vastly inflated prize from the usual £100,000.
Ashleigh and her dancing dog Pudsey, who won in 2012, scooped the massive prize fund of half a million but may be the only act ever to do so.
Show insiders said getting through to the final rounds is still a platform to start a bigger career from, with the winning act given a slot on the Royal Variety Performance.
One source said: "BGT is a massive platform for the acts. Some of them are carving out careers but the show turns them into household names.”