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Channel 5 confirms Big Brother axe

Viacom-owned UK terrestrial Channel 5 has confirmed that the 19th season of Big Brother, which launches tonight, will be the last on the channel.

Ben Frow

C5 picked up the classic reality format in 2010 after rival Channel 4 decided not to renew it after 10 years.

Along with its celebrity version, the show has aired annually on C5 ever since but controller Ben Frow said at the Edinburgh Television Festival last year that the contract with format owner Endemol Shine expired at the end of 2018 and probably wouldn’t be renewed.

Frow reiterated he was “planning for a 2019 without Big Brother” at the Edinburgh event this year and C5 confirmed via its Twitter account today that the latest season of the show would be its last.

Endemol Shine UK recently applied for planning permission to keep the Big Brother House in place for a further three years and, in a statement this morning, hinted at pitching the series to other broadcasters.

The statement said: “While disappointed not to reach agreement with Channel 5 the decision opens up a new chapter and we are excited about future possibilities for Big Brother in the UK.”

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