The winner of the American version of Big Brother twelfth season has some advice for anyone vying for a spot in the first Canadian franchise of the popular reality TV franchise.
“Keep your eyes on the prize and expect the unexpected,” Hayden Moss advised during a phone interview from Dallas, Texas. “Because anything can happen.”
Nation-wide auditions for the inaugural season of Big Brother Canada launch in Vancouver this Sunday, Sept. 23, at the Vancouver Convention Centre. Those chosen to compete will eventually be ensconced in a Big Brother house located in a secret location within the Greater Toronto area, outfitted wall-to-wall with cameras and microphones to capture every move. The “houseguests” are completely isolated from the outside world and each week compete against one another for the right to stay and to vie for the grand prize. As the Season 12 winner, Moss won $500,000.
Moss said initially he was very aware of the cameras.
“For the first month I was very conscious of the cameras because they follow you everywhere and you can hear them buzzing,” said Moss. “But after three months you become immune.”
Moss was 23 when he entered the Big Brother House and after winning went back to the University of Arizona to complete a business degree. Today he sells real estate out of Dallas.
Moss said as a lifelong athlete he’s always been competitive so his favourite times on the show were the competitions, some of which he described as “whacky.” And his least favourite times on Big Brother?
“It’s a super long game so at times you can get really bored and hate life,” said Moss. “It’s not easy, especially if things aren’t going your way. But bring your energy and you’ll be fine.”
Big Brother Canada producer Emily Morgan said while Canadians often have a reputation of being overly nice, she’s convinced there are enough “big characters” in the True North to make this version of the series worth watching. Big Brother Canada will air during the 2012/2013 season of the Slice network, which also broadcasts the reality series The Real Housewives of Vancouver. In 2011, the Big Brother franchise aired 25 versions of the series in 87 countries.
“This is a great opportunity to gather a really diverse group of Canadians,” said Morgan. “One of the reasons we’re starting casting in Vancouver is because we know it has a lot of characters and diversity.”
Morgan added that the producers aren’t looking for any particular “type.” The only barrier to auditioning is the potential houseguest must be 19 years or older. “They have to be old enough to drink,” said Morgan.
Speaking of drinking, Moss said the Big Brother house isn’t nearly as wild as what’s portrayed in scenes from the Bachelor franchise of reality TV programs, where drunken party scenes are par for the course.
“The producers kept us to a couple of beer a night,” said Morgan. “I guess they don’t want a bunch of people with pent-up aggression towards each other drinking too much.”
The are several rules the production team are asking potential houseguests to follow at the audition, such as don’t line up before 6 a.m. or you’ll be asked to leave and avoid excess baggage such as chairs. If you’re not from Vancouver be prepared to spend a couple of extra days for the call backs, which take place Sept. 24 and 25, and have proper government identification. And while snacks are allowed in line, food is not permitted inside. Big Brother Canada auditions take place at the Vancouver Trade and Convention Centre, Sept. 23 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.