After it was confirmed last week that Big Brother and Celebrity Big Brother were both being axed from Channel 5, Viacom’s CEO is explaining why it was “the right decision” for the company.
Comedian Jack Dee – who won CBB‘s first ever series back in 2001 – recently weighed in on the situation during an appearance on Loose Women, stating he “couldn’t be happier”, but where did this decision originate from?
Well, Bob Bakish (CEO of Channel 5’s parent company Viacom) said (via The Sun): “We continue to do reality programming all around the world and I don’t think it says anything about Big Brother broadly speaking, this is a decision we made based on the evolution of Channel 5 which again is a multi-year process we’ve been on.
“A place where we’re getting traction on is the original programming side,” he continued.
“I don’t want that to be interpreted as any kind of broader judgement on Big Brother. Again it was the right decision for us for this marketplace.”
The broadcaster has also revealed that the money saved on producing the reality show will be spent on four new original dramas.
Cold Call will be a four-part series set for screens next year, starring Sally Lindsay, plus there’s a new crime series coming up titled Blood which has Line of Duty actor Adrian Dunbar attached.
Whilst speaking to the Broadcasting Press Guild, Bakish further explained: “We thought the time was right to take the next step and that included taking that Big Brother money essentially and spending it on original commissions as we continue to raise the profile of the network.
“We’re a public service broadcaster and that means competing with everyone, including the BBC.”
Big Brother continues tonight (September 19) at 10pm on Channel 5, with Big Brother’s Bit on the Side following at 11.05pm.
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