Clearing the air. Josh Martinez, the winner of season 19 of Big Brother, was shoo-in for All-Stars. However, when the cast was announced during the August 5 premiere, his name was nowhere to be found.
Social media was flooded with rumors that Martinez, 26, was axed for going out partying amid the coronavirus pandemic or for pregaming with other contestants ahead of time. However, neither was the cast, the Challenge alum exclusively shared on the Thursday, August 13, episode of the “Watch With Us” podcast.
“I was supposed to be on the season up until the very last minute. Sadly, things fell through. You know, there’s been a lot of rumors about COVID and all this stuff. To be honest with you, I don’t feel like I need to address or say anything about that. That’s kind of a private matter,” the reality star shared with Us. “But it is unfortunate how it happened. I was a lock, I was supposed to be in and it sucks. It’s been really hard to be completely real with you.”
He continued: “The one thing that I do want to make clear is that I tested multiple times — I got tested by the medics — I’ve tested negative, probably four or five times. And it’s just a little embarrassing for people to think that I’m not taking the whole pandemic seriously and not taking the COVID situation seriously. … It’s a bit frustrating.”
Martinez also added that while he and Big Brother season 20 winner Kaycee Clark were spending time together — as many called out on social media — they were still social distancing.
“We were healthy. We did not get sick during those times,” he told Us. “I don’t know her situation either to be completely real with you. But it’s frustrating. It’s annoying because it’s already hard enough being having to be on the show and then getting off of it. And then having to deal with all this kind of negativity is it’s pretty hard.
For more from Martinez — including who he’s rooting for this season and who he believes is playing a bad game — listen to the full podcast above and subscribe on iTunes for more exclusive TV news and interviews.
Big Brother: All-Stars airs on CBS Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays at 8 p.m. ET.