Sari Nygren

Big Brother (TV series)

Big Brother is a reality television show where, in each series, a group of people live together in the Big Brother House, isolated from the outside world but continuously watched by television cameras. Each series lasts for around three months, and there are usually fewer than 16 participants. The housemates try to win a cash prize by avoiding periodic evictions from the house. The idea for the show came during a brainstorm session at the production house of John de Mol Produkties (an independent part of Endemol) on September 4, 1997. The first Big Brother broadcast was in the Netherlands in 1999 on the Veronica TV channel. It has been a prime-time hit in almost 70 countries. The show's name comes from George Orwell's 1949 dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, in which Big Brother is the all-seeing, all-controlling leader of the country Oceania.


Though each country has made its own adaptations and changes to the format, the general concept has stayed the same: "housemates" are confined to a specially designed house where their every action is recorded by cameras and microphones at all times and they are not permitted any contact with the outside world.

In most versions, at regular intervals, normally once weekly (although in most early series it was every two weeks), the housemates are invited to vote to have one of a number of nominated housemates evicted from the House. In some cases, two housemates may be evicted simultaneously (a "double eviction"), or rarely, no housemates will be removed for that week. At the end of the game, the last remaining housemate is declared winner of that particular series and receives prizes, often including a large amount of money, a car, a holiday and (in some editions) a house.

From a sociological and demographic perspective, this format can be analyzed to see how people react when forced into close confinement with people who lie outside their comfort zone, since they may hold different opinions or ideals from other contestants, or simply be from a different group of people than a contestant is used to. Indeed, the format is ideally suited to such analysis because the viewer sees how a person reacts on the outside through the constant recording of their actions and also what they feel on the inside through the Diary Room. The results can often be violent or angry confrontations, providing entertainment to the public.

Besides living together under continuous observation, which is the major attraction of the contest, the program relies on four basic props: the stripped-bare back-to-basics environment in which they live, the evictions, the weekly tasks set by Big Brother and the "Diary Room", in which the housemates individually convey their thoughts, feelings, frustrations and their nominees for eviction.

In the first season of most series of Big Brother, the House that the housemates had to live in was very basic. Although essential amenities such as running water, furniture and a limited ration of food were provided, luxury items were often forbidden. This added an element of survival to the show, increasing the potential for tensions within the house. Nowadays almost all series provide a modern house for the contest, with a jacuzzi, sauna, VIP suite, loft and other luxuries.

The housemates are required to do any housework as they see fit and are set tasks by the producers of the show, who communicate with the housemates via the omnipresent authority figure known to them only as "Big Brother". The tasks set are designed to test their team-working abilities and community spirit, and in some countries the housemates' shopping budget or weekly allowance often depends on the outcome of any set tasks. The housemates have a weekly allowance with which they can buy food and other essentials.

At regular intervals, the housemates each privately nominate a number of fellow housemates that they wish to see evicted from the house. The housemates with the most nomination points are then announced and viewers are given the opportunity to vote for whom they wish to see evicted. After the votes are tallied, the "evictee" leaves the house and is interviewed live by the host of the show, usually in front of a studio audience.

The series is notable for involving the Internet. Although the show typically broadcasts daily updates in the evening (which are sometimes criticized for their heavy editing), viewers can also watch a continuous, 24-hour feed from multiple cameras on the web. These websites were highly successful, even after some national series started charging for access to the video stream. In some countries, Internet broadcasting was supplemented by updates via email, WAP and SMS. The House is even shown live on satellite television, although in some countries, such as the UK, with a 10-15 minute delay to allow libellous or unacceptable content (such as references to people who are not taking part in the program and have therefore not consented to have personal information about them broadcast) to be removed.

Despite derision from many intellectuals and other critics, the show has been a commercial success around the world. More generally, the voyeuristic nature of the show, where contestants volunteer to surrender their privacy in return for minor celebrity status and a comparatively small cash prize, has attracted much scorn. On numerous occasions, participants in the various series have become sexually involved with each other, sometimes engaging in intercourse in front of Big Brother's cameras. This recorded material is typically not broadcast due to its explicit nature, as in the Australian and American editions. Other editions, however, such as the German and British versions, do broadcast it. The Internet stream also captures such moments, which has led to some controversy, with certain jurisdictions such as Greece attempting to have the show removed from the airwaves.

Most international versions of the show remain quite similar to each other in that their main format remains true to the original fly on the wall, observational style, with the emphasis being on human relationships. This is taken to the extent where contestants are forbidden from discussing nominations or voting strategy altogether. The U.S. version, however, has since 2001 taken on a significantly different format from the others in their second season, with a far stronger emphasis on strategy, competition and voting.

Isolation of housemates

The housemates are, for the most part, isolated within the house. They are allowed no access to television, radio or the Internet and are not allowed any form of communications with the outside world (including other media). In some shows, even books and writing material are not permitted, with the exception of religious materials such as the Bible, Torah or Qur'an.

Contestants are not completely isolated, however. They have regular scheduled interactions with the show's host (mostly on eviction nights), and throughout each day the program's producer, via the "Big Brother" voice, instructs the contestants in various matters and sometimes issues tasks or commands them to take certain actions. In some versions of the show, private chats with a psychologist are allowed at any time, often by means of a telephone in the Diary Room.

Variations in the format

  • There are Six special pan-regional versions of Big Brother. All these follow the normal Big Brother rules with the exception that contestants must come from each of the different countries in the region where it airs:
  • In the third UK series, Big Brother set live tasks for the housemate on a Saturday night in order to win treats. This format was discontinued in the fifth series due to poor ratings. This format has been used in Australia in the form of Friday Night Live.
  • The fifth UK edition introduced the "Evil" touch, whereby the character of Big Brother became almost a villain. Big Brother was establishing punishments and was proposing hard tasks and secret tricks. This was also seen in Australia, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Finland, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Pacific, Scandinavia, Serbia, Spain, Thailand, Philippines and Mexico.
  • The sixth UK series introduced secret missions where housemate would be able to win luxuries if they completed a secret task set by Big Brother.
  • In the seventh UK series, Big Brother became "twisted". Every week, housemates mental states were put to the test as Big Brother tried to break them. As a result of this, many housemates broke down.
  • The eighth UK Series saw an all-female house however 3 days later 1 male housemate entered.
  • The UK series always opens with a twist which have included First Night Nominations (BB4), Suit Case Nominations (BB5), Unlucky Housemate 13 (BB6), Big Brother Hood (BB7), an all-female House and the first inclusion of twins as contestants (BB8), a the first couple to enter as housemates and set a secret task to hide their real relationship (BB9), Jackie Stallone entering a house containing her son's ex-wife (CBB3), entrance of a non-celebrity in a celebrity edition (CBB4) Jade Goody's family announced to be visiting. (CBB5) and most recently, Many countries have followed these opening night twists such as Australia and the United States.
  • The fifth UK edition introduced "Fake evictions" where one or two housemates are "evicted"; however, unbeknownst to the housemates, they have in fact not been evicted. The housemate/s usually are put into a secret house where numerous twists happen. In the eighth UK Series one housemate was evicted, interviewed, and then sent straight back into the house. The housemates in the house got to see everything live, though.
  • In France and Canada, the format has been developed using couples. Twelve single people stay in the same house until only the winning couple are left.
  • Big Brother USA currently uses a different set of rules that began with the second season (the first season used the traditional format). Nominations are done by one houseguest, the Head of Household (HoH) and the houseguests vote for which nominee to evict, not the viewers. The third season introduced the Power of Veto, where a houseguest can save a nominee causing the Head of Household to name a replacement nominee. It's been adapted in Brazil and Africa and since then some countries modified their nominations rules.
  • The eighth American season, introduced "America's Player", a houseguest that is given assignments, unknown to the other houseguests, through votes from the viewing public. Included in the public voting is which nominated houseguest America's Player should vote off and campaign to get evicted. (Dan was "America's Player" on Big Brother 10 (U.S) This was also seen in the second Teen Edition of the Philippine version as the "House Player."
  • The third Dutch edition introduced the notion of "The Battle", in which the house is separated into a luxurious half and a poor half, with two teams of housemates constantly fighting for time in the luxurious half. Separated houses have also been used in Australia, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Italy, Norway, Poland, Scandinavia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and the UK. Australia, Italy, Philippines and Mexico added punishment zones to their houses. The punishment zone has been added to the UK house as a jail for Big Brother 9. This jail is used as a punishment for things like discussing nominations outside of the nominations pod, crossing the heaven/hell divide (which has now been removed), but sometimes housemates do not need to break rules to go to jail. In some instances, like during week 6, a "proceed directly to jail card" was one of Big Brother's ever-changing prizes. Being in "jail" on nominations day, (Monday) means that you will not be able to nominate unless a "get out of jail free" card is used. In week 6, Luke was only allowed to nominate as Rebecca had used this card to get him out. However, "jail" is not the only punishment used. When Rex's girlfriend, Nicole arrived on Day 58, she had broken a fundamental rule of Big Brother by stepping over the heaven/hell divide and had her suitcase revoked from her until Day 67.
  • In 2004, the fifth German edition was the first version to run for 365 days consecutively. In this season, the contestants were separated into three teams (rich, regular, survivor) and equivalent living areas. The ultimate winner got a prize of 1,000,000 €.
  • Also in Germany a new version of the show started: Big Brother - Das Dorf (Big Brother - The Village). It was the sixth season and started the same day season 5 ended. This was the first version supposed to run for years (without a predetermined end). It was set in a small artificial village including a church tower, a marketplace, 3 houses, 3 working areas (farm, car garage, dressmaking and later a small hotel, where celebrities from the real world could move into), a matcharena, a pub and a fitness room. The season ended after 363 days in February 2006 because of low ratings. In season seven, RTL II switched back to a traditional version.
  • The Voice Graph system in BB Argentina, BB Australia and BB Germany.
  • The fourth Greek season introduced a new element: the mother. In Big Mother, nine housemates take part in the game with their mothers, with whom they must coexist during the contest. The "mamas" were not able to win the prize but they would stay with their children until their eviction. However, this proved to be a failure with the show's audience and the show switched back to the traditional Big Brother format in mid-season. This concept, in modified form, was used in the Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition Plus.
  • The ninth American season, a result of the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike, added a romantic aspect to the game, by pairing the Housemates up and having them compete as couples chosen by their compatibility to each other.
  • Introduced in the fifth season of the American series, several countries have included twins, and in some cases triplets, in their shows. Series that have used Housemates who are twins or triplets are:
    • USA, 2004, Adria Montgomery-Klein and Natalie Montgomery-Carroll, 7th (Adria) and 8th (Natalie) Evicted, Used Name: "Adria".
    • Germany, 2005, Beate and Birgit
    • Australia, 2005, David and Greg Matthew, 14th Evicted (David) and Winner (Greg, although the prize money was split), Used Name: "Logan" (Middle name of both Twins).
    • Bulgaria, 2006, Lyubov, Nadejda, and Vyara Stancheva, 7th (Nadejda) and 9th (Vyara) Evicted, Winner (Lyubov), Used Name: "Vyara".
    • UK, 2007, Amanda and Sam Marchant, 2nd Place (Both were treated separately until Day 68 when they became one and became "Samanda")
    • France, 2007, Marjorie, Cyrielle and Johanna Bluteau, Winners (They competed as a team).
    • Spain, 2007, Conchi and Pamela De Los Santos, 2nd Place, Used Name: "Rosa".
    • Poland, 2007, Aneta and Martyna Bielecka, 4th Evicted (They were discovered as twins), Used Name: "Martyna".
    • Boss, India, 2008 ', Sana and Elena, 4th Evicted (Sana was introduced as Elena but the housemates soon found her to be different person and both were out at the eviction)

Special editions of Big Brother

Big Brother VIP / Celebrity Big Brother

The Big Brother format has been adapted in some countries in that the housemates are locally known celebrities. These shows are called Celebrity Big Brother or Big Brother VIP, depending on where the series is. In some countries, the prize money normally awarded to the winning housemate is donated to a charity, and all celebrities are paid to appear in the show as long as they do not voluntarily leave before their eviction or the end of the series. The rest of the format rules are almost the same as the ones from the original version, although in many occasions they are not so strict due to the exceptional character of the program. The series has been a prime-time hit in many countries and was aired for the first time in 2000, in the Netherlands.

  • A second variant appeared in the Netherlands in 2006: Hotel Big Brother. A group of celebrity hoteliers and a Big Boss run a hotel, collecting money for charity without nominations, evictions or winner.
  • A third variant appeared in the UK in early 2008: Big Brother: Celebrity Hijack, replacing the 2008 edition of Celebrity Big Brother. Instead of the celebrities playing the role of housemates, the celebrities in fact become Big Brother himself. The celebrities create tasks, hold nominations, etc. with the help of Big Brother. The housemates of the show are considered by the producers "Britain's most exceptional and extraordinary" 18-21 year olds. The prize for the winner of the series was £50,000.

Other editions

The Big Brother format has been extensively modified in some countries, most often to the point where the housemates are either teenagers or housemates from previous seasons. The winners of these seasons are often eligible to win the prize for themselves, unlike most of the celebrity edition versions.

  • Big Brother: Ty wybierasz (Big Brother: You Decide - Poland, season 1: 13 days; season 2: 7 days). A group of people -10 in season 1 and 6 in season 2- living together and competing for a pair of spots in the next regular season. It was made before the first two main Big Brother seasons. Without nominations or evictions.
  • Big Brother, Tilbake I Huset (Big Brother, Back In The House - Norway, 9 days). The BB1 Norway housemates living together again. They also welcome 4 new housemates, who are competing for a spot in the next regular season. Without nominations or evictions.
  • Big Brother Stjärnveckan (Big Brother, Week Of Stars - Sweden, 6 days); Big Brother, Reality All Star (Denmark, 32 days). Season with contestants from several reality shows, including Big Brother.
  • Big Brother Panto (United Kingdom, 11 days). Housemate from previous series spent time in the Big Brother House in order to perform a pantomime at the end of the series.
  • Teen Big Brother (United Kingdom, 10 days; Philippines, 42 days (Season 1), 77 days (Season 2)). Teenage housemates competing in a BB house.
  • Big Brother: All-Stars (Belgium, 21 days; United States, 72 days). Big Brother where all the housemates come from previous seasons of the contest.
  • Veliki Brat: Generalna Proba (Big Brother Try Out - Serbia, 7 days). Twelve Serbian contestants competing for a spot in the next Big Brother Balkans season. Without nominations or evictions.
  • Big Brother: The Housemates Strike Back (Bulgaria). Big Brother brought together Housemates from all Big Brother and VIP Brother seasons in Bulgaria and gave them their last task - to destroy the House. The new Housemates will be living in a new one.

There are also "test runs" with a group of celebrities or journalists living together in the house during a few days, with the only goal being testing out the house. There are occasions where people who have auditioned for the show are also put in the house, most notably in the British edition, where many housemates claim to have met before. Series such as these are known to occur in Argentina, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Mexico, Pacific, Philippines, Spain and many other countries. In some cases, it is not broadcast, but in others, such as the US edition, it is used as a promotional tool.

Big Brother series

Region/Country Local Title Network Winners Main Presenters

African Continent
Big Brother Africa M-Net
E4 (UK) (2003)
Season 1, 2003: Cherise Makubale
Season 2, 2007: Richard Dyle Bezuidenhout
Season 3, 2008: Current season
Mark Pilgrim (2003)
Kabelo "KB" Ngakane (2007 - present)
Big Brother Top Channel Season 1, 2008: Arbër Çepani
Season 2, 2009: Upcoming season
Arbana Osmani
Gran Hermano Telefe Season 1, 2001: Marcelo Corazza
Season 2, 2001: Roberto Parra
Season 3, 2002-2003: Viviana Colmenero
Season 4, 2007: Marianela Mirra
Season 5, 2007: Esteban Morais
Season 6, 2009: Upcoming season
Soledad Silveira (2001-03)
Jorge Rial (2007-10)
Gran Hermano Famosos Season 1, 2007: Diego Leonardi
Big Brother Australia Network Ten
TV 2 (New Zealand)
Season 1, 2001: Ben Williams
Season 2, 2002: Peter Corbett
Season 3, 2003: Regina Bird
Season 4, 2004: Trevor Butler
Season 5, 2005: Greg & David Matthew (Logan)
Season 6, 2006: Jamie Brooksby
Season 7, 2007: Aleisha Cowcher
Season 8, 2008: Terri Munro
Gretel Killeen (2001-2007)
Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O (2008)
Celebrity Big Brother Network Ten Season 1, 2002: Dylan Lewis
Big Brother Kanaal Twee Season 1, 2000: Steven Spillebeen
Season 2, 2001: Ellen Dufour
Season 3, 2002: Kelly Vandevenne
Season 4, 2003: Kristof van Camp
Season 5, 2006: Kirsten Janssens
Season 6, 2007: Diana Ferrante
Walter Grootaers
Big Brother VIPs vtm
Kanaal Twee
Season 1, 2001: Sam Gooris
Season 2, 2006: Pim Symoens
Big Brother All Stars Kanaal Twee Season 1, 2003: Heidi Zutterman
Big Brother Brasil Rede Globo Season 1, 2002: Kléber de Paula
Season 2, 2002: Rodrigo Leonel Fraga
Season 3, 2003: Dhomini Ferreira
Season 4, 2004: Cida da Silva
Season 5, 2005: Jean Wyllys
Season 6, 2006: Mara Viana
Season 7, 2007: Diego Bissolati Gasques
Season 8, 2008: Rafael Ribeiro
Season 9, 2009: Upcoming season
Pedro Bial
Big Brother Nova Television Season 1, 2004-2005: Zdravko Vasilev
Season 2, 2005: Miroslav Atanasov
Season 3, 2006: Lyubov Stancheva
Season 4, 2008: Current season
Niki Kunchev (2004-2006) and Evelina Pavlova (2004-2005)
Milen Tsvetkov (2008-)
VIP Brother Nova Television Season 1, 2006: Konstantin Slavov
Season 2, 2007: Hristina Stefanova
Season 3, 2009: Upcoming season
Niki Kunchev (2006-2007) and Evelina Pavlova (2006).
Loft Story TQS Season 1, 2003: Julie Lemay & Samuel Tissot
Season 2, 2006: Mathieu Baron & Stéphanie Bélanger
Season 3, 2006: Jean-Philippe Anwar & Kim Rusk
Season 4, 2007: Mathieu Surprenant
Season 5, 2008: Current season
Virginie Coossa
Gran Hermano Caracol TV Season 1, 2003: Mónica Tejón Adriana Arango
Carlos Calero
Big Brother RTL Season 1, 2004: Saša Tkalčević
Season 2, 2005: Hamdija Seferović
Season 3, 2006: Danijel Rimanić
Season 4, 2007: Vedran Lovrenčić
Season 5, 2008: Current season
Daria Knez (2004)
Antonija Blaće (2005-2007)
Celebrity Big Brother RTL Season 1, 2008: Danijela Dvornik
Antonija Blaće
Big Brother TV NOVA Season 1, 2005: David Šín Eva Aichmajerová, Lejla Abbasová and Leoš Mareš
Big Brother
TV Danmark Season 1, 2001: Jill Liv Nielsen
Season 2, 2001: Carsten B. Berthelsen
Season 3, 2003: Johnni Madsen
Lisbeth Janniche
Big Brother VIP TV Danmark Season 1, 2003: Thomas Bickham
Big Brother All Stars TV Danmark Season 1, 2004: Jill Liv Nielsen
Gran Hermano Ecuavisa Season 1, 2003: David Burbano Toty Rodríguez
Big Brother Suomi
Sub Season 1, 2005: Perttu Sirviö
Season 2, 2006: Sari Nygren
Season 3, 2007: Sauli Koskinen
Season 4, 2008: Current season
Mari Kakko (2005-2006)
Vappu Pimiä (2007-)
Loft Story M6 Season 1, 2001: Christophe Mercy & Loana Petrucciani
Season 2, 2002: Karine Delgado & Thomas Saillofest
Benjamin Castaldi
Secret Story
TF1 Season 1, 2007: Marjorie, Cyrielle and Johanna Bluteau ("Les Triplées")
Season 2, 2008: Matthias Pohl
Season 3, 2009: Upcoming season
Big Brother RTL
Season 1, 2000: John Milz
Season 2, 2000: Alida Kurras
Season 3, 2001: Karina Schreiber
Season 4, 2003: Jan Geilhufe
Season 5, 2004-2005: Sascha Sirtl
Season 6, 2005-2006: Michael Knopf
Season 7, 2007: Michael Carstensen
Season 8, 2008: Silke 'Isi' Kaufmann
Season 9, 2008-2009: Upcoming season
Percy Hoven (2000)
Sophie Rosentreter (2000)
Oliver Geißen (2000-2001)
Aleks Bechtel (2000-2003)
Ruth Moschner (2004-2005)
Oliver Petszokat (2004-2006)
Charlotte Karlinder (2007-2008)
Jürgen Milski (2007-2008)
Miriam Pielhau (2008-)

Greece and Cyprus
Big Brother
ANT1 Season 1, 2001: Giorgos Triantafyllidis
Season 2, 2002: Alexandros Moskhos
Season 3, 2003: Thodores Jspógloy
Season 4, 2005: Nikos Papadopoulos
Andreas Mikroutsikos (2001-2003)
Tatiana Stefanidou (2005)
Big Brother Nagy Testvér TV2 Season 1, 2002: Éva Párkányi
Season 2, 2003: Zsófi Horváth
Claudia Liptai
Attila Till
Big Brother VIP TV2 Season 1, 2003: Zolee Ganxsta
Grande Fratello
Canale 5
Sky Italia (Live)
Mediaset Premium (Live)
TRE Italia (Live on Mobile)
Season 1, 2000: Cristina Plevani
Season 2, 2001: Flavio Montrucchio
Season 3, 2003: Floriana Secondi
Season 4, 2004: Serena Garitta
Season 5, 2004: Jonathan Kashanian
Season 6, 2006: Augusto De Megni
Season 7, 2007: Milo Coretti
Season 8, 2008: Mario Ferretti
Season 9, 2009: Upcoming season
Daria Bignardi (2000-2001)
Barbara D'Urso (2003-2004)
Alessia Marcuzzi (2006-)
Bigg Boss SET
Colors Viacom 18
Season 1, 2006-2007: Rahul Roy
Season 2, 2008: Current season
Arshad Warsi (2006-2007)
Shilpa Shetty (2008-)
Ha'Ach Ha'Gadol
(האח הגדול)
The Big Brother
Channel 2 - Keshet Season 1, 2008: Current season Erez Tal and Assi Azar
Big Brother México Televisa Season 1, 2002: Rocío Cárdenas
Season 2, 2003: Silvia Irabien
Season 3, 2005: Evelyn Nieto
Adela Micha (2002-2003)
Verónica Castro (2005)
Big Brother VIP Televisa Season 1, 2002: Galilea Montijo
Season 2, 2003: Omar Chaparro
Season 3.1, 2004: Eduardo Videgaray
Season 3.2, 2004: Roxanna Castellanos
Season 4, 2005: Sasha Sökol
Víctor Trujillo (2002)
Verónica Castro (2003-2005)

Middle East
Big Brother الرئيس
The Boss
MBC Season 1, 2004: Discontinued
Big Brother Veronica (1999-2000)
Yorin (2001-2002)
Talpa (2005-2006)
Season 1, 1999: Bart Spring in 't Veld
Season 2, 2000: Bianca Hagenbeek
Season 3, 2001: Sandy Boots
Season 4, 2002: Jeanette Godefroy
Season 5, 2005: Joost Hoebink
Season 6, 2006: Jeroen Visser
Rolf Wouters (1999)
Daphne Deckers (1999)
Esther Duller (2000)
Beau Van Erven Doren (2000)
Patty Brard (2001)
Martijn Krabbé (2002)
Ruud de Wild (2005)
Bridget Maasland (2005-2006)
Big Brother VIPs Veronica (2000)
Talpa (2006)
Season 1, 2000: No winner
Season 2, 2006: No winner
Caroline Tensen (2006)
Big Brother Nigeria M-Net Season 1, 2006: Katung Aduwak Olisa Adibua & Michelle Dede
Big Brother Norge TVN Season 1, 2001: Lars Joakim Ringom
Season 2, 2002: Veronica Agnes Roso
Season 3, 2003: Eva Lill Baukhol
Arve Juritzen (2001-02)
Trygve Rønningen (2003)
Big Brother: Tilbake I Huset TVN Season 1, 2001: Leena Brekke

Pacific Region
Gran Hermano del Pacífico Telesistema (Ecuador)
RedTV (Chile)
ATV (Peru)
Season 1, 2005: Juan Sebastián López Álvaro García
Pinoy Big Brother ABS-CBN Season 1, 2005: Nene Tamayo
Season 2, 2007: Beatriz Saw
Season 3, 2009: Upcoming season
Willie Revillame (2005)
Toni Gonzaga
Pinoy Big Brother: Celebrity Edition ABS-CBN Season 1, 2006: Keanna Reeves
Season 2, 2007-08: Ruben Gonzaga
Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition ABS-CBN Season 1, 2006: Kim Chiu
Season 2, 2008: Ejay Falcon
Mariel Rodriguez (2006)
Toni Gonzaga & Luis Manzano (2008)
Big Brother TVN (2001-2002)
TV4 (2007-...)
Season 1, 2001: Janusz Dzięcioł
Season 2, 2001: Marzena Wieczorek
Season 3, 2002: Piotr Borucki
Season 4.1, 2007: Jolanta Rutowicz
Season 5, 2008: Janusz Strączek
Martyna Wojciechowska (2001-2002)
Grzegorz Miecugow (2001)
Andrzej Sołtysik (2001-2002)
Karina Kunkiewicz (2007)
Kuba Klawiter (2007-2008)
Małgorzata Kosik (2008)
Big Brother: Ty wybierasz TVN Season 1, 2001: Małgorzata Maier & Sebastian Florek
Season 2, 2001: Barbara Knap & Jakub Jankowski
Martyna Wojciechowska
Grzegorz Miecugow
Big Brother VIP TV4 Season 1, 2008: Jarek Jakimowicz Kuba Klawiter
Małgorzata Kosik
Big Brother TVI Season 1, 2000-2001: Zé Maria Seleiro
Season 2, 2001: Henrique Guimarães
Season 3, 2001: Catarina Cabral
Season 4, 2003: Nando Geraldes
Teresa Guilherme
Big Brother Famosos TVI Season 1, 2002: Ricardo Vieira
Season 2, 2002: Vítor Norte
Big Brother Prima TV Season 1, 2003: Soso Joi
Season 2, 2004: Iustin Popovici
Andreea Raicu
Virgil Ianțu
большой брат
Bol'shoy Brat
Big Brother
TNT Season 1, 2005: Anastasia Yagaylova Ingeboga Dapkunaite

Scandinavian Peninsula
Big Brother
Kanal5 (Sweden)
TVN (Norway)
Season 1, 2005: Britt Goodwin
Season 2, 2006: Jessica Lindgren
Brita Møystad Engseth (Norway)
Adam Alsing (Sweden) (2005)
Second Life Big Brother Second Life World Wide Web Season 1, 2006: Madlen Flint
Big Brother Súboj TV Markíza Season 1, 2005: Richard Tkáč Zuzana Belohorcová
Big Brother
Kanal A Season 1, 2007: Andrej Novak
Season 2, 2008: Naske Mehić
Nina Osenar
Big Brother South Africa M-Net Season 1, 2001: Ferdinand Rabie
Season 2, 2002: Richard Cawood
Mark Pilgrim
Gerry Rantseli
Celebrity Big Brother M-Net Season 1, 2002: Bill Flynn
Gran Hermano
Telecinco Season 1, 2000: Ismael Beiro
Season 2, 2001: Sabrina Mahi
Season 3, 2002: Javito García
Season 4, 2002-2003: Pedro Oliva
Season 5, 2003-2004: Nuria Yáñez
Season 6, 2004: Juan José Rocamora
Season 7, 2005-2006: Pepe Herrero
Season 8, 2006: Naiala Melo
Season 9, 2007: Judit Iglesias
Season 10, 2008: Current season
Mercedes Milá (2000-2001, 2002-present)
Pepe Navarro (2002)
Gran Hermano VIP
Telecinco Season 1, 2004: Marlene Mourreau
Season 2, 2005: Ivonne Armand
Jesús Vázquez
Big Brother Sverige Kanal5 Season 1, 2000: Angelica Freij
Season 2, 2002: Ulrica Andersson
Season 3, 2003: Danne Sörensen
Season 4, 2004: Carolina Gynning
Adam Alsing
Viktoria Tolstoy
Big Brother Stjärnveckan Kanal5 Season 1, 2002: Anki Lundberg (Baren)
Big Brother Schweiz TV3 Season 1, 2000: Daniela Kanton
Season 2, 2001: Christian Ponleitner
Daniel Fohrler (2000)
Karin Lanz (2000)
Eva Wannemacher (2001)
Yves Schifferle (2001)
Big Brother Thailand iTV Season 1, 2005: Nipon Perktim
Season 2, 2006: Arisa Sonthirod
Saranyu Vonkarjun
Big Brother Channel 4
Channel 4 +1
S4C (Wales)
M-Net (Africa)
TVN Lingua (Poland)
Series 1, 2000: Craig Phillips
Series 2, 2001: Brian Dowling
Series 3, 2002: Kate Lawler
Series 4, 2003: Cameron Stout
Series 5, 2004: Nadia Almada
Series 6, 2005: Anthony Hutton
Series 7, 2006: Pete Bennett
Series 8, 2007: Brian Belo
Series 9, 2008: Rachel Rice
Series 10, 2009: Upcoming Series
Davina McCall
Celebrity Big Brother BBC One
Channel 4
S4C (Wales)
Series 1, 2001: Jack Dee
Series 2, 2002: Mark Owen
Series 3, 2005: Bez Berry
Series 4, 2006: Chantelle Houghton
Series 5, 2007: Shilpa Shetty
Series 6, 2009: Upcoming Series
Teen Big Brother Channel 4
Series 1, 2003: Paul Brennan Dermot O'Leary
Big Brother: Celebrity Hijack E4
Channel 4
Channel 4 +1
S4C (Wales)
Series 1, 2008:John Loughton
Panto Big Brother Channel 4
S4C (Wales)
Series 1, 2004: No winner Jeff Brazier
Big Brother CBS
Global (Canada)
E4 (UK) (Seasons: 4, 9)
Season 1, 2000: Eddie McGee
Season 2, 2001: Will Kirby
Season 3, 2002: Lisa Donahue
Season 4, 2003: Jun Song
Season 5, 2004: Drew Daniel
Season 6, 2005: Maggie Ausburn
Season 8, 2007: Dick Donato
Season 9, 2008: Adam Jasinski
Season 10, 2008: Dan Gheesling
Season 11, 2009: Upcoming season
Julie Chen
Big Brother: All-Stars CBS
Global (Canada)
Season 7, 2006: Mike "Boogie" Malin

Western Balkans
Veliki brat Pink BH (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Pink M (Montenegro)
B92 (Serbia)
Season 1, 2006: Ivan Ljuba
Season 2, 2007: Stopped
Season 3, 2009: Upcoming season
Marijana Mićić
Ana Mihajlovski
Irina Radović
Milan Kalinić
Veliki brat Proba B92 Season 1, 2006: Jelena Provči & Marko Miljković
Veliki brat VIP Pink BH (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Pink M (Montenegro)
B92 (Serbia)
Season 1, 2007: Saša Ćurčić
Season 2, 2008: Mirjana Đurović

Housemate exchange

When two seasons in different countries are taking place simultaneously, housemates are sometimes temporarily exchanged between them.

Big Brother series Housemates involved Year Duration
BB1 Mexico
swapped with
GH3 Spain
Eduardo Ozorco 'El Doc'
swapped with
Andrés Barreiro 'Ness'
2002 7 days
GH3 Argentina
swapped with
GH4 Spain
Eduardo Carrera
swapped with
Inmaculada González
2003 7 days
GH1 Ecuador
swapped with
BB2 Mexico
swapped with
Eduardo Enríquez
2003 7 days
BB1 Africa
swapped with
Gaetano Juko Kagwa
swapped with
Cameron Stout
2003 4 Days
BB2 Scandinavia
swapped with
BB2 Thailand
Anton Granlund
swapped with
2006 7 Days
PBB2 Philippines
swapped with
BB1 Slovenia
Bruce Quebral
swapped with
Tina Semolič
2007 5 days
GH5 Argentina
swapped with
GH9 Spain
Soledad Melli
swapped with
Eneko Van Horenbeke
2007 7 days

Ex-Housemate exchange

Big Brother series Housemates involved Year
Housemate Visited
BB3 Australia
VIP2 Mexico
swapped with
GH5 Spain
swapped with
BR1 Russia
Housemate Visited
GH1 Pacific
swapped with
Housemate Visited
BB5 Australia
Housemate Visited
BB6 Germany
GH4 Argentina
swapped with
BB7 Brazil
swapped with
BB2 India
Jade Goody

Big Brother Subtitles

These are some of the subtitles of Big Brother shows around the world. These are not the local title of the show.

Region / Country Season Subtitle
3 Big Brother Anders
5 Zero Privacy
4 Episode 4
1 Vidi sve (Sees Everything)
2 Gola istina (Naked Truth)
3 Do kraja (To The End)
4 Bez milosti! (No Mercy!)
5 Avantura te zove! (Adventure calls you!)
4 The Battle
6 Das Dorf (The Village)
3 The Wall
4 Big Mother
3 The Battle
VIP 2 Big Brother Hotel
3 The Wall
Teen 2 Plus
1 Wielki Brat
3 Bitwa (The Battle)
1 O Grande Irmão
1 Fratele Cel Mare
2 Očekuj neočekivano (Expect the Unexpected)
VIP El Desafío (The Challenge)
1,2 Big Brother vas gleda! (Big Brother is watching you!)
Celebrity 1 In Aid of Comic Relief
Teen 1 The Experiment
5 Big Brother Gets Evil
Celebrity 3
7 Big Brother Gets Twisted
9 Zero Tolerance
4 The X-Factor
5 Project DNA - Do Not Assume
6 Summer Of Secrets
7 All-Stars
9 'Til Death Do You Part

Most Big Brother Series in One Country

As of 5th September 2008, the UK version of Big Brother, including the special editions, totals 17 complete series with the 18th, Celebrity Big Brother 6, due to start in January 2009. To date, nine complete series of the regular format have aired, with a 10th upcoming in Summer 2009, and five complete series of the Celebrity format have aired with, a sixth due to air in January 2009. There have also been three special Big Brother shows in the UK: Teen Big Brother; Big Brother: The Panto; and Big Brother: Celebrity Hijack.

Spain comes in second with 11 complete series, comprising nine regular and two VIP series, and a 12th currently on air. The United States is third, with ten complete Big Brother series.

Near-copies of Big Brother

There is a number of different formats around the globe that use rules similar to Big Brother, here are the most notable:


  • Johnson-woods, Toni (2002). Big Bother: Why Did That Reality TV Show Become Such a Phenomenon?. Australia: University of Queensland Press. ISBN 0-7022-3315-3.


Official sites

  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Croatia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • India
  • Israel
  • México
  • Nigeria
  • Pacific
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Thailand
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Western Balkans
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