Serbia’s Big Brother was cancelled because of the death of three evicted cast members. Stevan Zečevic, Zorica Lazić and Elmir Kuduzović died in a car accident Dec. 28, and the show’s producers and network decided to cancel the remainder of the series and “split the 100,000 euro (some 147,000 dollars) award between all the remaining contestants,” Deutsche Presse-Agentur reports.
A statement from the producers and network said, “Following the tragic death of former Big Brother’s housemates Stevan Zecevic, Elmir Kuduzovic and Zorica Lazic, B92 and the production company Emotion decided to bring to an end to the reality show late on Saturday. … Emotion and B92 express our deepest condolences to the families of the victims. The money garnered from this week’s voting would be given to the campaign for improving traffic safety.”
The series, known as Veliki Brat, would have concluded Jan. 5, and “managed (probably inadvertently) to bring exposure to issues, such as the lives of Kosovo Serbs, that do not normally penetrate mass culture in today’s truncated, dispirited Serbia,” according to the Los Angeles Times.
Psychologist and series commentator Dragan Ilic told the paper that the show “exposes the worst in people — that’s why it’s good. It opened us to problems of society, a lot of prejudices, even political problems, although politics are not allowed.”