Big Brother

dfergie

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CBS’s long-running reality hit Big Brother has always been a warts-and-all kind of TV show. But starting this month, you’ll be able to see contestants’ blemishes, their well-sculpted bodies, and Julie Chen’s body glitter more clearly than ever: Vulture has learned that Big Brother, the only regularly scheduled primetime program still shown in standard definition, will finally convert to HDTV when it debuts its 16th season on June 25. While 99.9 percent of primetime shows made the leap to high definition years ago, Big Brother has remained a bit fuzzier, its old-school production style increasingly noticeable as viewers’ eyeballs adjusted to the new standard of HD seen all over the dial. Big Brother didn’t stay SD out of nostalgia or some Luddite-like opposition to newfangled tech, however. “We’ve all wanted to go digital,” executive producer Allison Grodner told us. So why the delay? It’s complicated — literally.

Unlike most scripted and even most studio-based reality shows, Big Brother doesn’t just record its cast with a few stationary cameras, edit it over the course of a few days, and then send it along to viewers. The show locks a group of strangers into a specially constructed house built on the CBS Radford Studio lot near Hollywood, films them around the clock, and then turns it all into three one-hour shows, airing each week in near-real time. In order to capture all that backstabbing and Game of Thrones–worthy maneuvering, the Big Brother house is packed with dozens of cameras — fixed and robotic, inside and outside — which collectively record thousands of hours of footage each week. Doing all of this with traditional SD cameras has always been a massive undertaking; transitioning the process from analog to digital required an equally monumental (and costly) effort. “It’s not just about swapping out cameras,” explains Rich Meehan, who exec-produces Brother alongside Grodner. “Everything had to be changed ... and we couldn’t do anything that would jeopardize production of the series.”

While the biggest change viewers will see will obviously be that images from the Big Brother house (and Chen’s studio set) will now be in crisp high-definition, the new setup will be felt in other ways. “We’ve added 11 new cameras in the house for better coverage,” Meehan says, including some outside and in certain inside rooms and corridors. “We’ve also lowered some of the cameras so viewers are in the action more.” And because HDTV uses a different aspect ratio — 16:9 — the show’s camera operators now have many more angles and shots to play with than they did before. “You can now see from the kitchen area to the bedroom in one shot,” Meehan says. “It changes the whole look of the house.” Grodner says she’s looking forward to testing out what she calls her new “high-performance machine,” and that even the show’s production designers are making tweaks to the set because of HD: “We’re mindful of color and texture more,” she says. “We’re making sure there are layers and dimension to the house.” And folks who subscribe to the 24/7 live feed of the show will also benefit. “It’ll be a noticeable improvement for the internet viewers,” Crivelli says.
more at:
vulture.com

BIG BROTHER, hosted by Julie Chen, will debut early for the second straight summer, beginning Wednesday, June 25 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) with the first of its three weekly broadcasts. The Thursday edition, featuring the live eviction show, premieres June 26 (9:00-10:00 PM) with the first eviction the following week (July 3). The Sunday broadcast premieres June 29 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT).
 

thechaz05

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It always annoyed me that it was not in hd so I am pretty happy about this.

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DishSubLA

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Considering how well the ratings are for that show, I never understood why it wasn't HD, and I don't buy any explanation except that Les Moonves was too cheap. Deadliest catch has been HD for years and they use very compact cameras that end up being TOTAL LOSSES at the end of the season of shooting, and that's with far less deep pocketed Discovery. There was and is tons of Prosumer HD cams that would have produced a superior PQ to the crappy SD cams used on Big Brother. Those cams were in and paid for and, no, says Les, we aint a changing them out this soon. We'll wait til they break. Yeah, finally HD to see those HOT bodies! Geez, didn't Les get it. That's why we peek in on occasion :). Glad to see one of the last hold-outs of high rated shows joining the HD world. Now, it will be worth tuning in to Showtimes live peek each night.
 

StevenD

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Considering how well the ratings are for that show, I never understood why it wasn't HD, and I don't buy any explanation except that Les Moonves was too cheap. Deadliest catch has been HD for years and they use very compact cameras that end up being TOTAL LOSSES at the end of the season of shooting, and that's with far less deep pocketed Discovery. There was and is tons of Prosumer HD cams that would have produced a superior PQ to the crappy SD cams used on Big Brother. Those cams were in and paid for and, no, says Les, we aint a changing them out this soon. We'll wait til they break. Yeah, finally HD to see those HOT bodies! Geez, didn't Les get it. That's why we peek in on occasion :). Glad to see one of the last hold-outs of high rated shows joining the HD world. Now, it will be worth tuning in to Showtimes live peek each night.

It hasn't been on showtime in a couple of years. It's censored on TVGN now.
 

mike123abc

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Perhaps it was kept in SD for a while because of the makeup demands of HD. SD can hide a lot if you do not look your best 24/7.
 

dfergie

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The 16th cycle begins next week and in the tee-up to the return of the summer reality staple, CBS has announced this season's twists — and they're pretty significant.

PHOTOS 'Big Brother 16': First Look at the New House

This season two houseguests will win the Head of Household (HOH) title each week, a major tweak from the usual lone HOH. The HOH pair still has its perks, including the upstairs HOH suite. Because there will be two HOHs, each will have to nominate two houseguests for eviction each week. In a twist, however, winning HOH does not guarantee safety for the week.

Another twist comes in the form of fans influencing the game in a significant new way with an interactive element CBS is dubbing Team America.

There will also be a new high-stakes competition, the Battle of the Block, which the network promises will shift the power in the house week to week.

“When the houseguests learn about the new twists, they will need to throw out any pre-existing strategy if they want to survive in the game,” said Allison Grodner, executiveproducer of Big Brother. "The new Battle of the Block competition will shake up the power in the house like never before. A houseguest can go from zero to hero, or vice versa, every week!"

More twists and competitions will be announced during the June 25 premiere of Big Brother, which will be broadcast for the first time in HD.

hollywoodreporter.com
 

thechaz05

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Really different from what it used to be. Not sure I like it, but will watch to see how It plays out.

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