This year marks 20 years since Big Brother launched on UK television.
Davina McCall hosted the series on Channel 4.
Channel 4 has told ATV Today that it has no plans to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Big Brother. There had been talk of a documentary looking at how the show transformed reality television.
The brainchild of Dutch entertainment mogul John de Mol, Big Brother originated in the Netherlands in 1999, with Channel 4 bringing to screens a UK version the following year with Davina McCall as host.
The production was a ‘social experiment’ which saw members of the public – “housemates” – filmed around-the-clock as they co-habited a custom-built house for several weeks.
They would have to nominate each other for eviction with the decision on who goes then being put to viewers who could follow the housemates’ antics via a live feed (much reduced in the Channel 5 era) or nightly highlight shows. The winner would receive a large cash prize.
Davina with a host of Big Brother faces.
Former Big Brother winner Brian Dowling was the first host of the show when it moved to Channel 5.
A celebrity version was launched in 2001 – initially in conjunction with Comic Relief – and remained a companion to the main series until they were both axed in 2018. Other short-lived spin-offs in this country include Big Brother Panto, Teen Big Brother, and Big Brother: Celebrity Hijack, while daily news/magazine formats Big Brother’s Little Brother and Big Brother’s Bit on the Side ran alongside the show on Channel 4 and Channel 5 respectively.
Big Brother and Celebrity Big Brother ended its run in 2018 on Channel 5; the broadcaster snapped up the rights to the then decade-old format in 2011 after it was dropped by Channel 4.
Earlier this month there was speculation that Channel 4 were looking to revive the celebrity version. Newspaper reports claimed that production company Endemol were in talks with the broadcaster to bring back the celebrity series under the tagline of ‘Reborn’, focusing on celebrities trying to change their public image.
However, Channel 4 said it had no plans to revisit either Big Brother or Celebrity Big Brother. Last year, it marked ten years since the passing of one of the show’s biggest stars, Jade Goody, with a three-part tribute documentary.
Emma Willis, the final host of Big Brother.