Formats

Big Brother returning to UK via Five?

Richard Desmond-controlled UK terrestrial Channel 5 (C5) is close to finalizing a deal to bring back landmark reality show Big Brother, according to a report in one of Desmond's newspapers.
January 31, 2011

Richard Desmond-controlled UK terrestrial Channel 5 (C5) is close to finalizing a deal to bring back landmark reality show Big Brother, according to a report in one of Desmond’s newspapers.

Execs at the channel are “at an advanced stage” in discussions with producer Endemol, according to the Daily Star, a tabloid controlled by Desmond. The report comes as presenter Matthew Wright told viewers on C5′s talk show Wright Stuff today that it was “a done deal.”

The reality show has been off air in the UK since rival terrestrial Channel 4 (C4) dropped the format last year, having aired 11 seasons and numerous spin-offs. Despite waning appeal, the show still brought in considerable audiences for C4, averaging 2.9 million viewers across 2010. At its peak in 2004, it averaged 5.1 million.

The news comes after Desmond acquired C5 for £103.5m (US$160.2m) in July of last year. At the time, the Northern & Shell boss wasted no time in announcing that Big Brother was on his “shopping list.” However, initial talks stalled.

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news reporter at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joins the rs team with journalism experience following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.

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