Belfast Telegraph

Celebrity Big Brother housemates to be revealed as live launch approaches

The reality show returns to Channel 5 tonight.

Celebrity Big Brother is set to return to Channel 5 tonight with the Duchess of Sussex’s half-sister Samantha Markle among the famous faces hotly tipped to enter the house.

The contestants for the 22nd series of the reality show will be welcomed by returning presenter Emma Willis during the series’ live launch show from 9pm.

The theme for the new series is Eye of the Storm, which Channel 5 explained means each housemate will have been caught up in their own “media storm”.

Also rumoured to be joining the line-up are former Arsenal and Liverpool footballer Jermaine Pennant, kidnapped model Chloe Ayling and adult film star Stormy Daniels, who gained notoriety after suing US President Donald Trump following an alleged affair.

Addressing speculation about her involvement Markle, 53, previously told ITV’s Good Morning Britain: “I’ve worked in media most of my life, why would I not? Why would I stop living because I have a family issue going on?”

In July Channel 5 said that the situation surrounding the show’s future was “unchanged” following reports that the next series would be the last for the broadcaster following years of declining ratings.

A Channel 5 spokesman said: “The situation remains unchanged, Big Brother is currently contracted until the end of the year, there’s no update on future series beyond 2018.”

Pictures of the revamped house have revealed an interior decked out in tropical prints and designs described as “Hollywood Regency flair”.

In the garden the celebrities will be among cacti, succulents and a brightly coloured, mid-century modern design reminiscent of a Palm Springs desert.

The last series of Celebrity Big Brother was won by Australian drag queen Courtney Act, real name Shane Jenek, at the start of the year.

Another of the show’s former winners Rylan Clark-Neal will return to host spin-off show Bit On The Side. Long-time Big Brother narrator Marcus Bentley will again be updating viewers on the housemates’ latest antics.

Celebrity Big Brother launches tonight at 9pm on Channel 5.

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