Big Brother fans, listen up! Major news abounds for loyal viewers of this reality TV franchise. Not only will the spinoff Celebrity Big Brother return for Season 2 on Jan. 21, but Julie Chen (now going by Julie Chen Moonves) will return to CBS as the host.
Per The Hollywood Reporter, the network confirmed the news on Tuesday while announcing its midseason schedule.
Of course, Chen Moonves’ return isn’t without controversy. The entire reason her role on the popular reality series was in limbo had to do with her husband, CEO Leslie Moonves — a former CBS chairman who was fired following allegations of sexual assault and harassment.
When the expose on her husband first broke, Chen Moonves issued a statement on Twitter reinforcing her belief in her husband’s innocence.
“I have known my husband, Leslie Moonves, since the mid-’90s, and I have been married to him for almost 14 years,” Chen Moonves wrote. “Leslie is a good man and loving father, devoted husband and inspiring corporate leader. He has always been a kind, decent and moral human being. I fully support my husband and stand by him.”
More: Big Brother Sets Up New ‘Consequences’ for Inappropriate Behavior
In support of her husband, Chen Moonves also left the CBS daytime show The Talk, explaining to viewers in a video message that she needed to “spend more time at home, with my husband and our young son.”
Then, in September, Chen Moonves signed off of Big Brother by using her married name for the first time since the show’s premiere in 2000. “From outside the Big Brother house… I’m Julie Chen Moonves,” she said, slightly tweaking her typical send-off.
Despite any controversy over her return, though, Chen Moonves seems excited to be back at the helm. On Twitter, she posted a promo photo along with the simple caption: “#BBCeleb the countdown begins.”
As for who Chen Moonves will be hosting, the celebrity cast won’t be revealed until a later date. Last season’s house guests included Brandi Glanville, Ross Matthews, Shannon Elizabeth, Mark McGrath, Omarosa Manigault, Marissa Jaret Winokur, Ariadna Guiterrez, Chuck Liddell, Keshia Knight Pulliam and Metta World Peace.
Following the Season 2 premiere on Jan. 21, the show will air multiple nights per week for three weeks before concluding in a two-hour finale on Wednesday, Feb. 13.
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