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'Big Brother' producer promises "something die-hard fans will love"


By Christopher Rocchio and Steve Rogers, 06/25/2007 

CBS still hasn't revealed the details of this summer's new Big Brother twists, however executive producer Alison Grodner predicts at least one of the eighth-season changes will become an instant favorite with the long-running summer reality show's viewers.

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"This year, there will be something die-hard fans will love," Grodner teased to Daily Variety about a new still-undisclosed play-along-at-home component that will be part of Big Brother 8.  "It will give them the opportunity to participate even more than they have in the past."

Big Brother 8 will premiere on Thursday, July 5 at 8PM ET/PT.  After its debut, the show will air on Sundays and Thursdays at 8PM ET/PT and Tuesdays at 9PM ET/PT. 

However although Big Brother 8 a thrice-weekly similar broadcast schedule to what the the show's last six seasons have used, Big Brother's eighth season will be more omnipresent than usual.  In addition to its thrice-weekly CBS broadcasts, Big Brother 8's broadcast run will also include Big Brother: After Dark, a new 12AM to 3AM ET spinoff that will air nightly on Showtime Too.   Big Brother: After Dark will feature footage from the same live camera feeds that are made available to subscribers of the show's 24/7 live Internet feeds.

"The show has always been kind of ubiquitous, even before it became cool to do that," CBS reality programming and new media head Ghen Maynard told Variety. "This year, there are going to be some new things that make the show even more ubiquitous and interactive."

In addition to its After Dark spinoff and the live, streaming Internet feeds that the show has featured since its initial Summer 2000 season, CBS is also planning to give Big Brother fans the opportunity to monitor and influence activity in the Los Angeles-area house via text messaging, according to Variety

Similar to soaking in some sun at the beach or playing a game of wiffle ball in the backyard, Grodner believes that, after seven years, the long-running CBS reality series has become a staple of summer.

"It's not just about sitting down and watching television," Grodner told Variety.  "We're a summer event that's always with you.  I don't think any other show has that sort of reach."

Despite the extended outreach to big Big Brother fans, Maynard told Variety "good storytelling" will continue to be the show's focus when the newest houseguests find themselves living together over the course of a few months while trying to claim the $500,000 prize.

"It's important to make sure you don't betray the vision of the show," he told Variety.  "If you do too many tricks or stunts, you betray that."  



(Photo credit CBS)


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