The recent announcement of the first-ever U.S. edition of “Celebrity Big Brother”, slated for a condensed run in the winter of 2018 on CBS, has led many “Big Brother” fans to ponder and suggest the stars they’d like to see in the house. Here are several of those most notably considered (no, Frankie Grande or Jessie Godderz do not — and should not — be “celebrities”):
Neil Patrick Harris
The famed actor of “Doogie Howser M.D.” and former host of the Tonys, Emmys and Oscars once entered the “Big Brother” house back in 2006 during their All-Stars season — taking a brief break from filming “How I Met Your Mother” — to celebrate a “Christmas in August” reward for the houseguests.
In addition, Harris has once professed his desire to participate on Celebrity Big Brother… the one in the United Kingdom:
I've found a new TV obsession: Celebrity Big Brother UK. Can't stop watching YouTube videos! I so badly want to partake!
— Neil Patrick Harris (@ActuallyNPH) January 10, 2012
But now, he doesn’t have to fly across the Atlantic Ocean to do Celebrity Big Brother.
Stars on Past Celeb-Reality Shows
The top get from the world of the Kardashians has to be Caitlyn Jenner. The former “I Am Cait” star is not a stranger to recent celebrity reality competitions — in 2003 as Bruce Jenner, he competed on ABC’s “I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here”… the reality queen of mean Omarosa Manigault of “The Apprentice” may soon be available as it is rumored she will be fired from her White House job… former “America’s Next Top Model” judge and Omarosa’s foil on VH1’s “The Surreal Life” Janice Dickinson… the 70’s pop idol Marie Osmond had competed on “Dancing with the Stars” in 2007… also, a DWTS contestant but in 2016, Maureen McCormick aka Marcia Brady on “The Brady Bunch”… “The Partridge Family’s” Danny Bonaduce made a strong imprint in the reality genre with his 2-season VH1 docu-series “Breaking Bonaduce” back in 2005-06; he’s currently a radio DJ in Seattle….Phaedra Parks was recently booted off of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” but before she left, she began the scandalous rumor that Kandi (a fellow housewife) housed a sex dungeon; Wendy Williams praised the entertainment value Parks brought to the show and labeled her a “good liar”….former “American Idol”, “X Factor” and “So You Think You Can Dance” judge Paula Abdul once starred in her own short-lived VH1 reality show “Hey Paula!” in 2007 that showcased her real-life erratic behavior…
Shortly after Julie Chen announced there would soon be a celebrity edition of “Big Brother”, many on social media mentioned Tiffany Pollard, who was more widely known on reality television about a decade ago as “New York”. For those unfamiliar, consider Pollard — who had repeatedly labeled herself as the “HBIC” (Head B**** In Charge) — as a more boisterous version of “Big Brother’s” Da’Vonne Rogers.
She was first introduced as the runner-up bachelorette for the heart of rapper Flavor Flav on the first two seasons of the then-hit VH1 “Bachelor”-knockoff “Flavor of Love”.
This spawned two hit seasons of the spinoff “I Love New York”, as well as docu-series “New York Goes to Hollywood” and “New York Goes to Work”, and a guest spot on an episode of FX’s Ryan Murphy drama “Nip/Tuck”.
Within the past two years, Pollard has returned to the reality genre having appeared on “Family Therapy with Dr. Jenn” and “Famously Single”, but her most notable reality show appearance was in the United Kingdom on their Celebrity Big Brother in 2016 for which she finished in fourth place — the furthest an American woman has lasted on the series — and has been a fixture in British pop culture ever since.
We won’t get to see her on those live CNN New Year’s Eve specials anymore but a spot on TV shortly after the New Year might be possible for the comedienne. She experienced a tumultuous year, sparked by the controversial photo shoot of her holding a bloody, decapitated head in the likeness of Donald Trump. And Griffin’s no stranger to the “Big Brother” house — she entered with her “friend” the Zingbot to help him roast the remaining houseguests back in 2014.
The Potential Foils to Kathy Griffin
Reality show producers salivate for conflict. It’s the driving factor for the most successful programs. Four possible celebrities to counter a celebrity like comedienne Kathy Griffin (or someone of similar political leanings) would be the hunting-loving “Cat Scratch Fever” rock star Ted Nugent (once a reality show participant himself on VH1’s “Supergroup”); “Clueless” actress and former Fox News Channel contributor Stacey Dash; Duane “Dog the Bounty Hunter” Chapman who was embroiled in an N-word controversy in 2007 and has languished in relative obscurity since the end of his once-popular A&E show in 2012; or, “The Usual Suspects” actor Stephen Baldwin. Baldwin publicly supported Donald Trump for U.S. President in 2016, appeared on the U.K. Celebrity Big Brother in 2010, and in 2003, competed alongside Griffin on ABC’s “Celebrity Mole: Hawaii” (which Griffin had ultimately won).
ANY Major League Baseball Player
Much how like “Dancing with the Stars” attracts athletes to participate, “Celebrity Big Brother” could do the same by attracting stars from the sole major U.S. sport in its offseason during the winter — Major League Baseball. It would be extra boon for a sport hungry to attract young audiences. Some of the notable personality-driven players of MLB are Anthony Rizzo, Didi Gregorius and Stephen Vogt.
Miguel Cabrera can also be an option because he is known to start a fight!
The former star of “Taxi” and “Evening Shade” is familiar with the reality competition genre, appearing as a contestant on each “Celebrity Apprentice” and, most recently, “Dancing with the Stars”. Her unique ability of having a highly superior autobiographical memory would make Henner a formidable player in the Q&A contests that tests one’s observation skills.
Celebrities who’ve expressed their Big Brother fandom
The following stars have publicly commented about “Big Brother” for years, and probably wouldn’t mind a crack at partaking in the actual game come winter… Samm Levine (“Freaks and Geeks”, “Inglorious Basterds”) and Shannon Elizabeth (“American Pie”, “Scary Movie”) are frequent guests on the online “Big Brother” web chat show hosted by season 8 winner “Evel” Dick Donato… on Twitter or YouTube, Lance Bass (*NSYNC)…
— Lance Bass (@LanceBass) November 6, 2016
Andy Cohen (“Watch What Happens Live”)…
Jamie-Lynn Sigler (“The Sopranos”)…
Let's talk about #BB19 a minute. Say what you want about this season, I agree, but Paul deserves it. He has manipulated this entire game👏🏼👏🏼
— Jamie-Lynn Sigler (@JamieLSigler) September 5, 2017
Chelsea Peretti (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”)…
MCCRAE AND HAYDEN SHOULD CO-HOST A SHOW ABOUT HAIR CARE AND LOVE
— Chelsea Peretti (@chelseaperetti) August 9, 2014
Matthew Morrison (“Glee”)…
#BB16Finale What a great night! So happy that Derrick walked away with the win. Well deserved!
— Matthew Morrison (@Matt_Morrison) September 25, 2014
Valerie Bertinelli (“One Day at a Time”, “Hot in Cleveland”)…
— Valerie Bertinelli (@Wolfiesmom) August 25, 2014
Mary Lynn Rajskub (“24”, “The Larry Sanders Show”)…
Watched the BB finale last night…. Sigh… It's over
— Mary Lynn Rajskub (@MaryLynnRajskub) October 1, 2013
Matt Iseman (“American Ninja Warrior”, “The Celebrity Apprentice”) and AJ McLean (Backstreet Boys)…
— Matt Iseman (@mattiseman) September 21, 2017
Singer Ryan Cabrera, whose biggest hit single was “On The Way Down” that was one of pop radio’s most ubiquitous songs of 2004…
Who on here are Big Brother fans??????
— Ryan Cabrera (@RyanCabrera) August 18, 2015
And, as recently as July of this year, Cabrera predicted a BB19 victory for Paul (who hasn’t?) at a red carpet event.
Would CBS Allow These Stars to Compete for Several Weeks?
Although it’s likely the first “Celebrity Big Brother” season would last 6-8 weeks — a lengthy amount of time to miss production on a regularly-scheduled program, the obvious synergy of the following stars from notable CBS shows to appear on the network’s long-running reality competition might be too tempting to pass up… self-proclaimed BB fan Bobby Moynihan made an appearance as host of a veto challenge on “Big Brother 19”
… the “SNL” alum stars in his new primetime comedy “Me, Myself and I”…
When asked about the one reality show he’d most like to do, “The Late Late Show” host James Corden has expressed his wish for “Big Brother” which offers a “proper toilet”…
Pauley Perrette, who portrays the famed “NCIS” lab technician Abby, once hosted “Big Brother” Press Day in 2011 (shortly prior to its 13th season) and was excited to proclaim herself as a “massive fan” of the show…
— Pauley Perrette (@PauleyP) June 23, 2016