Julie Chen just kicked off another round of “Big Brother!” The 52-year-old television personality has been hosting the CBS reality competition since its debut in 2000. During the off-season, she was a co-anchor on “The Early News” from 2002 to 2010 and the moderator on “The Talk” from 2010 to 2018. Her “Big Brother” gig, however, has brought her a legion of fans unlike any other, as they impatiently wait for Julie to kick off their summer TV programming with the latest season of the show.
Four years into presenting the iconic series, which originated as a Dutch show, Julie wed at-the-time CBS CEO Les Moonves. The couple are still going from strength to strength. Find out all about Les, below.
Les hails from Brooklyn.
Born on October 6, 1949, Les grew up in Brooklyn, New York in a Jewish family with three siblings. He graduated from Bucknell University, where he took courses in pre-med and Spanish. In 1971, he decided to change lanes and dive into acting.
He tried acting at first, appearing in small television roles.
After college, Les set his sights on drama and eventually graduated from the Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theatre. He first landed a small role in “Barbary Coast” and followed up with parts in “Cannon” and “The Six Million Dollar Man.” When he wasn’t satisfied with being in front of the camera, he turned his efforts to working behind the scenes.
Les got his start producing made-for-TV movies.
In 1985, Les found a home at Lorimar Television, where he was in charge of the company’s movies and miniseries. In 1990, he was made the president of Lorimar, serving the post for three years. After Warner Bros. acquired Lorimar, Moonves became the President and CEO of Warner Bros. Television in 1993
He brought ‘Friends’ and ‘ER’ to your living room.
While he was President and CEO of Warner Bros. Television, Les gave the green light to “Friends” and “ER,” among other highly successful programs during that era. He left Warner Bros. to accept the position of president of CBS Entertainment in 1995. When he took over for CBS, he was featured on the cover of New York magazine, being called “Mr. TV” in a group hug with Jennifer Aniston, Teri Hatcher and George Clooney.
Les began dating Julie while his divorce was still pending
Les married Nancy Wiesenfeld in 1978 and they welcomed three children together. In 2003, they filed for divorce, although they were already living apart. Around that time, Les and Julie began a romance. 13 days after the divorce was finalized on December 10, 2004, Les and Julie got married in Acapulco. He and Julie gave birth to their only child together, a son named Charlie, in 2009.
He stepped down from CBS amid sexual harassment allegations.
In July 2018, The New Yorker published an article by Ronan Farrow where six women accused him of harassment and intimidation. The following September, six more women came out to accuse him of sexual misconduct. While he denied al lthe allegations, Les stepped down as CBS CEO on September 9, 2018.
In a recent interview, Julie said she still stands by her man, and even went into detail about why she used her married name to sign off from “Big Brother” during a live episode in 2018 shortly after he resigned. “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,” she told Deadline. “And it was a sign of support for my husband. I know him. And he is a good man.”