‘Big Brother’ Host Says Switching to Julie Chen Moonves Was to Take a ‘Stand’ After Husband’s Scandal

Big Brother has had the same host for years. But Julie Chen Moonves shocked fans by changing her last name recently. She explained her decision and her husband’s reaction.

Julie Chen Moonves is married to Leslie Moonves

Julie Chen Moonves in a purple bow shirt stands next to Leslie Moonves who wears a black jacket and matching shirt.
Julie Chen Moonves and Leslie Moonves | Michael Tran/FilmMagic

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Leslie Moonves was chairman and C.E.O. of CBS Corporation for over 20 years. He’s also been married to the host since 2004.

In 2018, The New Yorker reported that six women came forward and accused him of sexual harassment. Four of them claimed he kissed them by force during meetings. They all claimed he was hostile after they rejected him and for some, sabotaged their careers.

The executive stepped down from his position after the report. He later sued the company to claim a $120 million severance award. According to CNBC, he dropped it in 2014, and the money that was held in a trust reverted back to the company.

Julie Chen added ‘Moonves’ to her name on ‘Big Brother’ to take a ‘stand’

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The host made a big change by signing off as Julie Chen Moonves instead of Julie Chen in 2018. She stuck to that change and talked about that decision with Deadline.

“I made the change on the fly on a live show in the spur of the moment,” she said. “I didn’t tell anybody. I was like toying with it, and I remember my heart racing while I thought, ‘Am I gonna do it?’ It just became a moment.”

She revealed her husband’s reaction afterward. “I think he was just like, ‘What happened?'” she claimed. “When I married my husband, I chose not to take the name because I thought it could be seen as an unfair advantage. It was a powerful, popular name to have. And I had made my own career prior to knowing him. So I wanted to keep that.”

“And then when his name was getting dragged through the mud, I thought this is the time to make my stand and to let the world know who I am,” the host continued. “And it was a sign of support for my husband. I know him. And he is a good man.” 

Julie Chen Moonves is back for ‘Big Brother 24’

https://twitter.com/JCMoonves/status/1544410053880561670

The host used to co-host on The Talk but left after the scandal. But she’s sticking to her job of hosting the Big Brother franchise and has no plans of leaving.

Big Brother 24 has the theme of BBFest this year, and the house is styled like a BBMotel. The new season premieres on Wednesday, July 6, 2022, on CBS at 8 p.m. EST. 

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