HGTV’s home reno power twins, Drew and Jonathan Scott, are helping some of Hollywood’s biggest names – from World War Z star Brad Pitt, to How To Get Away With Murder star Viola Davis, Life Of The Party star Melissa McCarthy, and musician Michael Bublé – to say a big “thank you” the people in their lives who inspired and guided them while they were growing up and even now. They’ll be surprising these friends, mentors and family members with special home renovation projects. And each episode will give insight into a celebrity’s real life as they join the project hands-on in the design phase and reveal stories from their personal lives that still fill them with gratitude. “The wonderful thing about Celebrity IOU is that it is about personal acts of kindness and thanks. We all want to find ways to help the people who are always there for us when we need them,” says HGTV president Jane Latman.

In Property Brothers style, the renovations will happen at lightning speed to cause as little disruption in people’s lives as possible, and we’ll be keeping the tissue box handy for those big emotional moments. “It’s amazing to see someone who is extremely successful be grounded enough to always remember the people who helped them get there,” says Jonathan, while Drew adds, “This is what we love, transforming people’s lives through their homes.”

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IOU Q&A

Who came up with the idea for the series?

Jonathan: Drew and I each get about half a million messages on social media every week! Our fans are always coming up with amazing ideas and requests for things they would love to see us do. This idea came from them, but it was about five years in the making.

Drew: We ran into Viola Davis at the Emmys in 2015 and told her about the idea. She instantly loved it, and told us she knew exactly who she would want to do this renovation for (her best friend, Michelle). A few weeks later, Jonathan got a phone call from Brad (Pitt), who said he had heard about it too and wanted to be a part of the series.

Jonathan: Honestly, I had no idea that it was Brad PITT when I heard, “It’s me, Brad,” on the line. I thought it was my friend, Brad, from college playing a trick on me


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How did you decide which celebrities to cast on the show?

Jonathan: We were looking for great stories and people, like we do with all of our shows. We were so lucky to have found celebrities who, regardless of their fame and success, have nothing but genuine appreciation for others and are kind. Brad took the time to introduce himself and thank every member of our crew for their work on his friend’s home.

Drew: Scheduling was also a major consideration! Between our busy schedules and theirs, finding days to film was nothing short of a miracle! When we filmed Celebrity IOU, we were also filming two other series (Property Brothers: Forever Home and Brother vs Brother) in two, sometimes three cities at the same time.


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Whose renovation knowledge/home design savvy surprised you the most?

Jonathan: Brad’s knowledge and passion for architecture and design was really impressive. Every celebrity we worked with was so hands-on and a huge part of the process from beginning to end! What they didn’t know going into this experience, they were definitely committed to learning on the job. Rebel (The Hustle star Rebel Wilson) even learnt how to operate a bulldozer!

Drew: And Melissa (McCarthy) is a huge HGTV fan and kept asking us when it was time to swing the sledgehammer and when she did, it was incredible (and hilarious)! We’ve never seen anyone more excited to do it.


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Was it intimidating to work with such high-profile clients?

Jonathan: We always take our work very seriously – no matter who the homeowner or client is, but given the context of the renovations on this series, and how the celebrities were trusting us to give back to people they value the most in life, well, the pressure was definitely on!

Drew: For Michael (Bublé), he was renovating a home for the caregiver who looked after his grandfather until the end of his life. Michael’s grandfather was the most instrumental person in his entertainment career – even getting him his earliest gigs as a young, emerging singer – and his dying wish was for Michael to always look after this caretaker and her family. Michael owes so much to his late grandfather, and being able to stay true to his word means the world to him. That’s such a special story and we wanted to help him.


Did any of the celebrities’ visions or ideas for their renovation inspire you for other projects you have outside of the show?

Drew: Actually, yes. You may see a nod to the garage conversion we did for Brad Pitt’s episode in the next season of Brother vs Brother.

Celebrity IOU S1 starts on Saturday, 16 May on HGTV (177) at 19:50

Fans can access additional content from the show on HGTV’s digital platforms. Visit HGTV.com for articles, before and after photo galleries, and more details about the celebrities, and follow @HGTV and #CelebIOU on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for additional show content and updates.

More Property Brothers on right now!

  • Property Brothers At Home S1 on HGTV (177)
  • Buying And Selling With Property Brothers S1 on HGTV (177)
  • Property Brothers At Home: Drew’s Honeymoon House S1 on HGTV (177)

Check your DStv TV Guide for times.

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