New season to get nightly ‘adult’ show

Big Brother Up LatePeter Wiltshire from Channel Nine’s sales division revealed today that Big Brother will gain a new nightly ‘adults only’ show in the 2012 lineup. The announcement was made at a media buyers breakfast alongside news of Channel Nine’s programming plans for the rest of the year.

Accompanying the usual 7pm daily show which has been described as “family friendly”, the new adult show will be broadcast on multichannel GO! at 9pm weeknights.

At this stage we’re not sure if this is simply a return of Big Brother Up Late, or something a little more ‘saucy’. Big Brother Uncut (later retitled Adults Only) was pulled mid-2006 amid political pressure and Up Late has not been seen since 2007. Either way a 9pm timeslot allows for screening of MA15+ content.

New Big Brother trailers take ‘inspiration’ from UK

Channel Nine have begun slipping short ‘reborn’ trailers for the upcoming Big Brother season into its programming. The trailers began late at night a week ago and have now made their way into primetime slots for A Current Affair and The Voice.

This is the closest glimpse we have to the 2012 opening titles so far. Interestingly Southern Star (the show production company) and Channel Nine seem to be going with the theme music used from the 2005-2007 seasons, which is arguably the most memorable version.

There’s no denying though that the trailer and new Big Brother eye are incredibly similar to the designs used for the latest seasons of Big Brother UK, which was also ‘reborn’ to a new channel in 2011. Here’s a comparison:

Big Brother UK and Australia eye comparison

Oh dear… maybe Channel Nine doesn’t have the funds available for a ‘new’ logo.

It’s now a good guess to say the new Big Brother Australia house could very well be similar to the new UK house, which was revealed this week.

Over in England their new Big Brother house is very plush, almost looking like areas from a luxury hotel resort. Will we see the same here, or vast rooms with sparse IKEA furniture?… Channel Nine’s budget will decide!

Thanks to marquisite for eye comparison image.

What have they been up to?

It’s been more than ten years since Big Brother first aired on Australia television. What have your favourite and not so favourite housemates been up to since their time on the show? We’ll look into the post-show lives of various BB personalities over the coming weeks…

Saxon, housemate in 2003
Saxon on DUI chargesOops, in 2010 Daniel ‘Saxon’ Small was charged with DUI offences in Manly. He blew a blood alcohol reading of 0.062 before telling cops he had consumed three bourbon and cokes at his girlfriend’s house and no food. Because Saxon had a previous drink driving conviction he was fined $880 and had his licence disqualified for 12 months. Yikes!

Jessica, housemate in 2002
Jessica Hardy can’t get enough of reality television. After her stint on Big Brother season 2, then her own reality TV show where she married fellow housemate Nathan “Marty” Martin (now since divorced), she is set to appear on the current season of ‘Dating in the Dark’, airing on FOX8. Jess will be a contestant on the show, where ‘daters’ meet each other in a pitch black room and then decide whether they want to continue a relationship when the lights are turned on. A little known fact is that Jess was also a finalist on Channel 7’s “The Mole” in 2001. Reality TV junkie?

Jemma, housemate in 2001
Gemma with her chocolateJust last month Jemma Gawned was getting press for her ‘Naked Treaties’ food business, which specialises in healthy chocolates and cakes. Her “raw vegan, certified organic, gluten and dairy free” products are on the verge of breaking into markets in USA, Hong Kong and Singapore. Oh, and did we mention in 2005 and 2006 she dated Daniel MacPherson?

Gretel Killeen, host 2001-2007
Gretel Killeen show posterAnd what about the original Big Brother mum, Gretel Killeen? Aside from her usual plethora of public speaking engagements for various charities and not profits, most recently she’s touring an improv comedy show titled “Gretel Killeen’s Looking for Love in all the Wrong Underpants“. She’s also finishing off a movie version of her novel “Jimmy and Gret Don’t Do Sex” which she directs and stars in. Busy lady! And what does she think of Big Brother nearly five years after her departure? Well, newspapers have reported she is coaching new host Sonia Kruger, but Gretel now simply refers to Big Brother as a “rather controversial show” of her past.

Stay tuned, we’ll be revisiting other Big Brother personalities in the weeks leading up to the 2012 season.

Auditions: the complete process

The public side of the Big Brother housemate hunt has come to a close, and while most of the auditionees will be keeping quiet about their experience based on the strongly worded contracts they all had to sign, we can reveal the full audition process.

Round One
Once your details and ID are checked each potential housemate is given their audition number with a strike of highlighter pen through it. The strikes are made in one of three colours and in different patterns which mean different things. The patterns were always either // or = or / or -. It is unclear what each strike means, but it seems to have some correlation between what the registration staff view on their computer screen and what they want to tell your audition conductor about your application.

From here you’re led to the holding station where you wait as groups of 20 to 40 people are called through at a time, once through you’re split into your colours (as marked with highlighter pen), with all groups in the same room at the same time. Your group, consisting of 10 to 12 applicants has one auditioner and at least one assistant auditioner who collects forms, watches from the sidelines and whispers in the ear of your audition conductor. You then complete some of the following tasks, which vary in each city:

  • Warm up: Dance like a ballerina, roll on the floor, be angry at someone, yell at the other group, cluck like a chicken, howl like a wolf, “strut at me like you’re on the cat walk”.
  • 30 seconds to talk about yourself
  • Emotional questions: “Have you ever had your heart broken?”, “do you have a huge regret in life”, “have you ever been arrested”. This sometimes comes in the form of the “I have never” game. From all reports, contestants who made clear and emotional responses were most successful in getting through to the next round. This is particularly true if your response contradicts your appearance. For example: a big footballer saying he gets heartbroken.
  • Line up exercise: The audition conductor asks everyone to arrange themselves in a line based on statements, which are usually “best dressed in the room (best at one end, worst at the other)”, “the smartest in the room”, “the most likely to be arrested”, “the most like to have your heart broken”. In almost all cases the only successful applicants put themselves on an extreme end of the line (rather than the middle) – they were then given more airtime to talk with the audition conductor.
  • Heated questions: The conductor will ask three topical questions and ask you to stand on a marker that indicates on what scale you agree. The questions are Gay Marriage: yes, civil unions or no. “Boat people”: let them in, process them or send them back. Peep hole at the gym: Look, report it or do nothing. Those who are fast, firm and move to the front of each response group get asked why, those who are passionate without being over the top tend to be successful. Generally those who answer in the negative dont tend to go further. Occasionally groups are asked “if you were on a trivia show, what would you choose?” the answers are pop culture, science and math or politics.

Round One is usually wrapped up with the audition conductor asking some of the same questions as above but in different ways, usually for a few who haven’t had much air time. In some audition groups people are asked to use their bodies to create images, but not always.

Only 1 to 4 people per group are then sent on to round two. These people tend to be those who gained a significant amount of air time, were intelligent, extremely attractive, were some form of ‘extreme’ or simply quite passionate or had a good story.

Round two
Successful applicants from round one are ushered in to a second holding area. In this round you sit in groups of 10 or 11 people in front of a panel of 3 audition conductors. Each person then introduces themselves and discusses hot topics such as gay marriage, immigration, the effects of technology on society and binge drinking. From all reports, people who were very attractive and somewhat intelligent made it through this round. People relying on “good stories” did not make it through. We have also been informed that most of the men making it through were the typical ‘hot rough bogan’ seen in the past seasons of Big Brother.

Round three
Those who made it to the final round received a personal escort to a secluded area to meet with the judges. There they were placed in a dark room with a camera and asked to talk about themselves in detail.

The next stage
Anyone successful in round three is then contacted sometime within the next few days to move on to the private auditions. This pool is approximately 250 people from the entire country. Applicants are required to fly to Melbourne (or sometimes Sydney) out of their own pocket to attend.

Ads show sneak peak of BB9 opening titles

Think things are quiet down in Adelaide? Think again: their TV advertisement for the Big Brother housemate hunt gives us a sneak peak of the theme for Big Brother Australia 2012.

Rumours to come from the crew members at various housemate hunts have hinted that Channel 9 will re-use the Big Brother theme music from the 2007 season.

BB9 Preview 4

BB9 Preview 5

The 2012 Big Brother eye is very similar to the new eye used in the UK. Expect the Australian opening theme to take ‘inspiration’ from the UK show:

Housemate auditions: the real deal

Did you attend the Big Brother housemate hunt and get rejected for no apparent reason? You’re not alone – reports from those who attended tell of a strange selection process favoured towards the overtly extroverted.

Typically auditionees are rounded up in groups of twelve and then asked to participate in ‘fun’ games (such as constructing a sailing ship) for around fifteen minutes. Each potential housemate is then asked some ‘opinionated questions’ which are usually centred around political knowledge.

After these questions almost all contestants are eliminated – usually one to three people out of each group of twelve make it through to the next round.

Behind Big Brother user ~Robbie~ tells us “most of us in my group were genuine ‘normal’ people, but the three out of twelve in my group who moved forward would have been the ‘fame whore’ type.

One woman who got through looked stunning, like a pro model, one of the dudes that made it, I was told he was putting on some sob story because a guy who went to the the same school as him was in our group and he was pissed when he heard the guy going on with the sob story… then next minute he got through [too].

And the creepiest part of the audition process? The Big Brother production crew have been monitoring potential housemates via their email addresses and social media profiles. After being rejected from auditions, ~Robbie~ was “officially recognised by the Big Brother staff as a member/fan from THIS site, just as I was about to leave, they asked for my name again and then handed me a sheet of paper that said…

Dear Robbie, Remember – Big Brother is always watching.
Please send our love to all the fans on Behind Big Brother. The Big Brother Team.

Attached to the sheet of paper was a screen capture of a post ~Robbie~ had made on the Behind Big Brother forums several months ago discussing his registration for the housemate hunt. ~Robbie~ predicts a BB recruiter recognised his name, email address and location posted to the forums and handed him the sheet of paper because of his online activity.

It seems the Big Brother production crew have been researching potential housemates from the very beginning via their Facebook profiles and online activity. Didn’t make it through to the next round of auditions? Don’t feel too bad – they probably decided it from your Facebook profile long ago.

Big Brother 2012: What we know so far

Big Brother house from airSo much speculation and goss! Here’s all the facts you need to know about the new Big Brother:

The official BB Facebook page has confirmed Big Brother will start “sometime after the Olympics”. Channel Nine are the official free-to-air broadcaster of the 2012 London games, and don’t have the schedule space to broadcast BB until then. The games are set to finish on 12 August (London time). Reality TV and sports aren’t a great mix anyway…

There’s been quite a few issues surrounding where the house will be. It will once again sit within the walls of the Dreamworld theme park, but its exact location was a hot topic: The land where the old BB house was located was sold to become part of the Comera town centre. Fox Studios, Movie World and Luna Park Sydney had all been considered as the new location for Big Brother. However, recent photos displayed by (again) the Big Brother Facebook page, show the original site is being marked for reconstruction.

That reconstruction is weeks behind schedule, according to insiders from Dreamworld, who say their efforts to get the theme park’s Easter and school holiday attractions up and running have delayed any construction on the Big Brother house. Photos from Big Brother titled the “old Big Brother house” show extensive pink spraypaint markings which fans have speculated will form the new walls of the 2012 house. Either way, there’s only three months left to get those walls constructed.

Former Queensland Premier Anna Bligh is thought to have been influential in determining Big Brother’s location at Dreamworld, since it draws tourism to Queensland.

And secrets? Forget about that. The early announcement that the new series would be called ‘Big Brother: Secrets’ where “every housemate has a secret” has completely vanished. The concept seems to have been abandoned by the production crew. The early announcements indicated the show would be leaning towards becoming like Secret Story, the official version of Big Brother in France, which includes an extra task: every housemate must keep their special designated secret from being revealed, otherwise they are evicted.

Feeling nostalgic? Check out this awesome video compilation from Behind Big Brother user matts bb featuring house tours and scenes from the past eight seasons of Big Brother:

Big Brother Australia will be back

Channel 9 have picked up the rights to a new series of Big Brother Australia, Big Brother: Secrets, the Herald Sun reports.

Corroborating that report is an update to Southern Star’s website, pointing users to the official Big Brother Australia Facebook page. Southern Star own the rights to the Big Brother franchise in Australia.

Behind Big Brother may indeed have another life. Until then.