Hey CBS, What Happened To Celebrity Big Brother 2020?

Julie Chen hosts Celebrity Big Brother U.S. on CBS
(Image credit: CBS)

What in the name of Chenbot is happening with Celebrity Big Brother 2020? Should we assume CBS silently cancelled it -- like The Hitmen taking out everyone in BB16? I fully expected Celebrity Big Brother Season 3 to air this winter on CBS. Fans waited so long for the U.S. to get its own version of Celebrity Big Brother, and the first two seasons seemed to go well enough to justify a third. No?

CBS's schedule would suggest no but Julie Chen keeps teasing Big Brother fans about something, so either she's just a heartless troll or we're getting some good news.

Celebrity Big Brother Season 1 aired from February 7 to February 25, 2018. Season 2 aired from January 21 to February 13, 2019. But CBS released its winter 2020 schedule and there's no mention of Celebrity Big Brother. There was no renewal announcement.

Also, when CBS did renew Big Brother for Season 22 in summer 2020, Deadline reported that Julie Chen had signed on to return as host. The site delved into issues with her contract, since she is not only married to ousted CBS boss Les Moonves, she made a point to add his last name to her own on every episode of Big Brother. But Julie Chen is back for Big Brother 22 ... just not Celebrity Big Brother 3?

Deadline's report from the September 2019 renewal of Big Brother 2020 noted there was no official word at the time about Celebrity Big Brother Season 3. But the site did add this hint: "However, while not totally dead, all indications are that CBB will not be on the CBS calendar in 2020. The spinoff was not a part of Chen Moonves’ new package with the network." As we now know, Celebrity Big Brother was in indeed not on the 2020 calendar. And I can't imagine anyone else would be hosting it if not Julie Chen.

So ... Celebrity Big Brother is dead? If so, why? Did CBS just want more room on the schedule for something else? CBB had shortened seasons, only 13 episodes as opposed to the whole summer like the main show, but it did air across several episodes each week. Maybe after trying it twice, CBS decided it wasn't worth it? It would be nice to hear something official.

It would also be nice to hear from Julie Chen on what she's doing with her many Twitter teases.

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Julie Chen keeps tweeting things with Big Brother backgrounds, and she posted several GIFs of past houseguests. Was she in fact teasing future HGs for Big Brother All-Stars? We know Survivor 40 is doing an all winners season this winter 2020. Is CBS maybe continuing the all-stars theme from there to Big Brother? Whatever she's really doing, Chen seems to be enjoying torturing Big Brother fans. After countless requests to spill the tea, she instead tweeted out this:

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Julie Chen more recently shared a comparison shot between Big Brother 11 in 2009 and Big Brother 21 in 2019.

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Not sure why she chose to share that in November 2019, but she's definitely keeping Big Brother on the brain.

Some Big Brother fans are still grumbling about summer 2019's BB21, which gave the win to controversial Jackson Michie. Celebrity Big Brother Season 2, on the other hand, gave a unanimous win to Tamar Braxton and most fans seemed happy about that. It's sad that we don't seem to be continuing that still relatively new tradition.

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Stay tuned for updates from CBS and Julie Chen on what's happening with Big Brother 2020 -- the main BB22 season, which is definitely returning, and whatever else we may get. Another Big Brother: OTT? I'd rather have the celeb version.

Keep up with everything that is premiering in early 2020 with our handy TV schedule.

Gina Carbone

Gina grew up in Massachusetts and California in her own version of The Parent Trap. She went to three different middle schools, four high schools, and three universities -- including half a year in Perth, Western Australia. She currently lives in a small town in Maine, the kind Stephen King regularly sets terrible things in, so this may be the last you hear from her.