CBS waited until one day before Big Brother 24’s premiere to announce its cast, and already the show has dropped one of those cast members and replaced them.
That person happens to be a houseguest who is already on another broadcast network reality competition: America’s Got Talent.
Marvin Achi, a 28-year-old chemical engineer from Houston, appeared on the second episode of America’s Got Talent season 17.
“One day, I was experimenting, and something crazy happened, so I needed to go on America’s Got Talent, because I wanted everyone to see this experiment,” he said in his AGT intro package.
He introduced himself to the judges in front of a very fake-looking chemistry set, full of brightly colored liquid, and then knocked some of it over.
Instead of doing an experiment, he tore off his shirt and stripped, and then rippled his muscles. (Watch here.)
Simon Cowell called him “a stripping chemical engineer,” and the judges sent him through to the next round.
Of course, many acts get sent through and effectively disappear from the competition. But Marvin’s casting for Big Brother is pretty much a guarantee that he did not make it through to the live shows, which start later this summer, in August.
The AGT 17 auditions were filmed from April 1 to 10 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium.
Late Tuesday, just seven hours after the cast was announced, CBS tweeted: “Important casting update! Marvin will no longer be one of our Houseguests on this season of Big Brother.”
There was no reason given.
Last season, Christie Valdiserri was announced as a BB23 cast member, and then was replaced; she revealed she’d tested positive for COVID-19.
While the AGT appearance seems like an obvious reason for Marvin’s replacement, as it would have been very unusual to have someone on two network shows at the very same time, it has happened before, and on CBS with Big Brother.
Marvin’s audition aired June 7, and for the production or network to have not known about that seems unlikely—especially because, during the application and/or casting process, applicants would have been asked about other media appearances.
The Big Brother contract says that CBS gets “the exclusive right to my services as a performer in all media … for one (1) year.”
It also says cast members may not “make any appearance on television, radio, internet or any other media, whether or not relating to the Series, without Network’s prior written approval for a period of one (1) year after the initial network television exhibition of the last episode.”
Hamsterwatch wrote, “Is it possible he forgot to tell BB about that, and that’s why he got booted just seven hours after cast reveal? We may never know. At least we won’t have to hear the show announcer using recycled-from-Rachel chemist puns all season.”
As usual, the Big Brother fanbase is speculating and researching. One piece of information that got a little traction on Twitter is that Marvin follows a right-wing provocateur on social media. But I don’t believe for a second that’d bother CBS, considering the long history of Survivor and Big Brother cast members with far more toxic Twitter presences.
Marvin’s replacement on BB24
Marvin was replaced by Joseph Abdin, a 24-year-old lawyer from Lake Worth, Fla.
In an e-mail interview with Parade, Joseph said “I think people are gonna perceive me as all brawn, no brain. It’s a theme I’ve gotten throughout my life. Most likely, they’re gonna look at me as just a physical threat and nothing more.”