The former The Talk co-host has inked a deal with the Viacom-merging company to do Season 22 of Big Brother, I’ve learned. The next installment is slated to air next summer.
While the finer points of an agreement had to be worked out in recent weeks, the real concern on the part of the now-Joe Ianniello-run media outlet was whether Chen Moonves wanted to come back for more Big Brother – which she made very clear to execs and co-workers that she did. I hear that any spillover to the former CBS News reporter from the controversy surrounding her spouse and former CBS overlord Leslie Moonves and his fall from power last year after numerous allegations of sexual misconduct emerged last fall has long since evaporated.
Season 21 of Big Brother is set to have its last-HouseGuest-standing finale on September 25. CBS renewed the series for a 22nd season in May.
Last September, as the scandal involving her husband was fresh, Chen Moonves signed a one-season contract extension with CBS. From what we know, this latest deal is much in the same vein, though multiple seasons are foreseen for the BB host.
No official word yet whether Celebrity Big Brother also will be back early next year nor whether Chen Moonves will be fronting the third season of that spinoff. 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.
Speaking of packages, having filed paperwork in February in California for the founding of Moon Rise Unlimited LLC, ex-CBS CEO Les Moonves is pursuing binding arbitration proceedings against CBS for the denial of his $120 million severance package.
An internal investigation at CBS that ended in December determined that the once-seemingly all-powerful exec actually was fired for cause due to the claims of sexual harassment and assault against him and his less-than-above-board reactions to said allegations. That finding meant that Moonves was not eligible for the huge payout stipulated in his dense contract with CBS – and hence the ongoing closed-door legal sparring.
Chen Moonves is repped by Kenneth Slotnick at the NYC-based AGI Entertainment Media & Management