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Shannon Elizabeth talks ‘Celebrity Big Brother’

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Shannon Elizabeth talks ‘Celebrity Big Brother’ (photo courtesy CBS)

Following her recent eviction from the house on CBS’s “Celebrity Big Brother,” actress and animal-rescue activist Shannon Elizabeth (“American Pie,” “Scary Movie”) says she has no regrets about appearing on the show.

A spin-off of the “Big Brother” TV franchise, the first season of “Big Brother: Celebrity Edition” was a condensed version of the program, and featured 11 celebrities locked in a house full of cameras and microphones chronicling their every move. 13 episodes aired from February 7 to February 25.

Elizabeth’s housemates included Omarosa Manigault (former reality TV star and White House aid), Mark McGrath, lead singer of the band Sugar Ray, and Keshia Knight Pulliam (formerly of “The Cosby Show”).

One by one, celebrities were booted from the house with Elizabeth’s eviction arriving in the season’s 7th episode.

TME: You say that your housemates turned against you. What happened exactly?

Shannon: They did turn against me. Even before I was evicted, they had turned on me. Honestly I don’t understand it. They said they felt like I was the biggest threat. But I was also on their team and helping them so I don’t know what really happened.

TME: After your experience in the house, do you still consider yourself a fan of “Celebrity Big Brother?”

Shannon: I’m still a huge fan. Obviously, I watch the show now with different eyes. I know what it feels like to be in there. Before I was on the show, I couldn’t understand why some people on the show were acting the way they did. Now I understand it.

TME: What surprised you the most about the time you spent living in the house?

Shannon: I didn’t realize there was going to be so much downtime in the house. There would be day after day of literally nothing to do. They would wake you up early in the morning just to sit around all day and make food and stare at each other. We really didn’t know what to do with ourselves. We would film some “Diary Room” interviews (the ‘Diary Room’ is a room where housemates discuss their feelings with ‘Big Brother’ about activity in the house. It’s also a room where the cast may be summoned for advice, warnings or eviction).

Beyond that, we were literally just moving room to room trying to find games to play because we really didn’t know what else to do.

TME: Omarosa brought some drama to the show when she was briefly hospitalized following an asthma attack. What did her presence in the house bring to the show, in your opinion?

Shannon: Her reputation preceded her. I think a lot of us in the house were hesitant or scared that she was going to be mean. Then we were all very curious. We were asking lots of questions but there was only so much she would tell us because she knew we were on camera. The reality is, she’s a fascinating person and I found her great to talk to. She’s actually very sweet. I think she surprised a lot of people.

TME: What is next for you? Are you heading back to South Africa with your rescue organization, Animal Avengers?

Shannon: I am going back in a few weeks. Animal Avengers started here in Los Angeles as a dog and cat rescue organization. Now we’re focusing on wildlife and conservation in Africa. We’re trying to help with initiatives to stop the poaching crisis.

We’re starting a new program called “Rhino Review” and we’re supporting great people on the ground, whether it involves rescuing a Rhino or flying veterans and anti-poaching units and police to the area to help. We’re just trying to do our part. We have much more info on our website and you can follow us on all social media.


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