Big Brother

Big Brother: Big Brother is a reality television game show.

What is Big Brother?

Big Brother is a reality television game show created by the Dutch-based international television production firm, Endemol. The show has been running continuously since 1999 in one form or another. In the show, a certain number of contestants are made to live together in one house without any contact from the outside. The contestant and house is under constant observation, the footage from which is then edited and aired each episode.

What is the premise of Big Brother?

The main premise of the show is the 10 to 20 contestants, who have to live in one house with each other, usually for 3 months. The house is a large house, which is usually constructed specially for the show, which also makes it easier to outfit the house with hidden cameras and microphones. These cameras and microphones record the house and the contestants 24 hours a day, the footage of which is edited and broadcasted for the audiences.

The contestants are completely cut off from the outside world. They have no contact from their loved ones and no access to television, internet or newspapers. The contestants have to live in a basic environment, without any luxuries. However, the use of certain utilities and luxuries may be offered as a prize of the weekly tasks and competitions, which are set by the Big Brother.

The contestants also have access to the Diary or Confession Room, where they have to their thoughts, feelings, and frustrations, as well as reveal their nominees for the weekly eviction. Each week, the contestant must nominate another contestant for eviction. The audience then gets to vote on the selected contestants and decide who stays and who goes. The last remaining contestant is then announced the winner and usually wins a final cash prize.

How many different formats has Big Brother utilized?

As the show got popular, the producers started to utilize special editions of Big Brother. This achieved two points: 1) to make more money for the show’s producers and 2) to keep the show entertaining and stop it from becoming repetitive and dull.

Hence, these variations of the show came about, especially in some countries:

  • Celebrity Big Brother and Big Brother VIP: Instead of the average Joe, these editions incorporated local celebrities as contestants on the show. The prize money from the show is usually donated to the charity of the winner’s choice.
  • Teen Big Brother: This version casts teenagers as contestants.
  • Big Brother: All-Stars: This version brings back contestants from previous seasons for an ultimate showdown of sorts.
  • Secret Story: In this version, each contestant has a secret. Everyone has to try and discover each other’s secrets.

When was Big Brother started?

The concept of Big Brother was said to have been decided during a brainstorming session at Endemol on March 10, 1997. Endemol is a Dutch-based international television production firm. The creation of the show is generally attributed to John de Mol, a Dutch media tycoon and founder of Endemol.

The first ever season of Big Brother was broadcast in the Netherlands in 1999. The show was aired on the Veronica TV Channel. The term Big Brother originates from George Orwell's novel, Nineteen Eighty-Four. In the book, the people live under constant observation of the government, which is headed by the faceless dictator, The Big Brother. The name was picked because the premise of the show is similar: the contestants live under constant observation of the public.

The concept of show has gotten so popular and numerous countries have come up with their own version of the show. The premise of the show is rarely changed; however, one rule has been applied that the contestants must be from that region or country.

How many different versions of Big Brother are there?

Currently, there are many different versions of Big Brother ongoing, which have been adapted to each country. Some countries even have more than one variations of the show, such as Big Brother, Celebrity Big Brother or Big Brother VIP, etc. Versions of Big Brother were run or are currently running in these countries:

  • Africa: Big Brother Africa and Big Brother Africa: All-Stars
  • Albania: Big Brother
  • Middle East: Al-Rais Big Brother
  • Argentina: Gran Hermano and Gran Hermano Famosos
  • Australia: Big Brother Australia and Celebrity Big Brother
  • Belgium: Big Brother, Big Brother VIPs and Big Brother All-Stars
  • Brazil: Big Brother Brasil
  • Bulgaria: Big Brother, Big Brother Family, VIP Brother, and Big Brother All-Stars
  • Canada: Big Brother Canada, Loft Story (Quebec [French]), Loft Story: La Revanche (Quebec [French]), and Big Brother (Quebec [French])
  • Colombia: Gran Hermano
  • Croatia: Big Brother, Big Brother - Veliki Brat and Celebrity Big Brother
  • Czech Republic: Big Brother
  • Denmark: Big Brother, Big Brother VIP and Big Brother Reality All-Stars
  • Ecuador: Gran Hermano
  • Finland: Big Brother and Celebrity Big Brother
  • France: Loft Story and Secret Story
  • Germany: Big Brother and Promi Big Brother
  • Greece: Big Brother, The Wall and Big Mother
  • Hungary: Big Brother Nagy Testvér and Big Brother VIP
  • India: Bigg Boss, Bigg Boss Bangla and Bigg Boss Kannada
  • Indonesia: Big Brother Indonesia
  • Israel: HaAh HaGadol and HaAh HaGadol VIP
  • Italy: Grande Fratello
  • Lithuania: Paslapčių namai
  • Mexico: Big Brother México and Big Brother VIP
  • Netherlands: Big Brother, Big Brother VIPs and Secret Story
  • Nigeria: Big Brother Nigeria
  • Norway: Big Brother Norge and Big Brother Norge - Tilbake I Huset
  • Pacific Region: Gran Hermano del Pacífico
  • Peru: La Casa de Los Secretos
  • Philippines: Pinoy Big Brother, Pinoy Big Brother: Celebrity Edition and Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition
  • Poland: Big Brother, Big Brother: Ty Wybierasz and Big Brother VIP
  • Portugal: Big Brother, Big Brother Famosos, Big Brother VIP, Secret Story - Casa dos Segredos and Secret Story - Casa dos Segredos: Desafio Final
  • Romania: Big Brother
  • Russia: Bol'shoy Brat
  • Scandinavia: Big Brother
  • Serbia: Veliki brat, Big Brother - Veliki Brat, Veliki brat VIP and Veliki Brat: Generalna Proba
  • Slovakia: Big Brother Súboj
  • Slovenia: Big Brother and Big Brother Slavnih
  • South Africa: Big Brother South Africa and Celebrity Big Brother
  • Spain: Gran Hermano, Gran Hermano VIP, Gran Hermano: El Reencuentro and Gran Hermano: La Revuelta
  • Sweden: Big Brother Sverige and Big Brother Stjärnveckan
  • Switzerland: Big Brother Switzerland
  • Thailand: Big Brother Thailand
  • Ukraine: Big Brother Ukraine
  • United Kingdom: Big Brother, Celebrity Big Brother, Teen Big Brother, Big Brother Panto, Celebrity Hijack and Ultimate Big Brother
  • United States: Big Brother and Big Brother: All-Stars
  • Vietnam: Big Brother Vietnam


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