Last update: September 22 2009, 11:56 PM

RP ‘Big Brother’ update

September 22, 2009

MANILA, Philippines—Three contestants from last week’s Tokyo auditions will be included on the shortlist for the next season of “Pinoy Big Brother.” Tryouts are ongoing in California in the United States, program director Lauren Dyogi has announced.

The Tokyo auditions ended on September 13. “We’re heading to San Francisco for the final global auditions,” Dyogi told Inquirer Entertainment in a text message.

Dyogi reported that Anuska Bahn, a representative of Endemol, the Dutch TV company that owns the “Big Brother” franchise, will arrive next week to take part in the final casting of “PBB: Double Up,” which premieres Oct. 4 on ABS-CBN.

“Regional finalists are starting to receive confirmation for final casting,” Dyogi said. The director reported that 11 finalists were chosen from the Manila auditions. Six contestants each were chosen from the Tarlac and Pampanga tryouts. Tryouts in Cebu, Bohol and Capiz yielded eight each. Butuan, Davao and General Santos each produced 10.

Six finalists were picked from auditions in Batangas and Camarines Sur; five passed tryouts in Europe, said Dyogi.

Bianca Gonzales, one of four hosts, said she has no idea why the show is titled “Double Up,” and that neither do co-hosts Mariel Rodriguez, Toni Gonzaga and Luis Manzano. “I guess maybe it’s because there are two groups of housemates that may be challenging each other.”

Asked what she thought makes a Big Winner, Bianca said, “It’s hard to say. But something I’ve seen that’s common to all Big Winners so far is their vulnerability. They opened their hearts and minds. This made the voting public open up to loving them, in turn.”

“Pinoy Big Brother” and its many foreign counterparts follow the same format. Twelve contestants live together inside a house for about 100 days. The winner brings home the grand prize package that includes a car, a house, a business franchise, home appliances and a cash prize.

“Big Brother” has been exported to 42 territories. Only two weeks ago, it was reported that Channel 4 in London will air the final series of the reality show’s British version next year. The word from the British network was that “Big Brother” had reached its “natural end point.”

Email mcruz@inquirer.com.ph

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