Britain's 'Big Brother' show calls time
British reality television show "Big Brother", which launched the career of Jade Goody and sparked an international row over the abuse of Indian film star Shilpa Shetty, has gone out with a bang.
The show, with a format used worldwide in which the activities of people living in a studio house are televised round the clock, launched in Britain in 2000 and became one of the country's most popular programmes.
But one scandal too many and dwindling ratings saw broadcaster Channel 4 decide to call time with an "Ultimate Big Brother", featuring former winners and favourites.
The house had 382 cameras capturing their every move.
Since the show launched, 267 contestants have lived in a Big Brother house during 19 series.
Goody, who died of cervical cancer in March last year aged 27, found fame after appearing on "Big Brother" in 2002, transforming her 15 minutes of fame into a full-time celebrity career.
She released an autobiography, a perfume and an exercise video, and saw her notoriety go global when she subjected Bollywood star Shetty to racist bullying on "Celebrity Big Brother" in 2007.
The mother of two's death sparked worldwide interest.
The final edition saw past favourites re-enter the house, including US rapper Coolio and a Portuguese transsexual.
Flamboyant Irish former air steward Brian Dowling, who won the second series in 2001, claimed the crown Friday in a fireworks finale following a public vote.
The final show included a tribute to Goody.
© 2010 AFP