Big Brother Canada still filming in Toronto despite COVID-19 pandemic
The latest season has been filled with twists and turns due to the fact that contestants were unaware of the virus' existence until fairly recently, but it seems shooting is set to continue in spite of it all.
Apparently, there are three Big Brothers in production at the moment where cast members do not know about #COVID19— Ryan Broderick (@broderick) March 16, 2020
Absolute hellworld shit https://t.co/cVvqLxI7qs
Watching the episode of Big Brother Canada where they find out about coronavirus. Gutting, surreal stuff.— Jason (@JasonDigsPanda) March 22, 2020
"As part of the production's precautionary measures, the houseguests have been provided a thorough update on the domestic and international status of COVID-19 along with an update that all houseguest's family members remain unaffected by COVID-19 at this time," the statement reads.
"In addition to having been in isolation for more than three weeks, the production has a resident doctor who has assessed and determined that no houseguests have exhibited any signs or symptoms related to COVID-19. In light of the extremely unique situation regarding COVID-19, the houseguests were each provided a letter from home and remain in the Big Brother house at their own will."
The show's production company, Insight Productions, also suspended audience members from attending live tapings of the show on March 12 until further notice.
In Canada, a new season of Big Brother started 2 weeks ago. The contestants have no clue about the severity of the Coronavirus pandemic. When someone is voted out of the show, they come out to a studio with no audience.— C.J. Prince (@cj_prin) March 15, 2020
Contestants talk about it then production shuts them down. pic.twitter.com/hixPc4KEf9
But the fact that shooting is still happening also means a crew of more than 50 people is gathering and interacting daily.
And a Big Brother Canada employee — who has chosen to remain anonymous in order to protect their job — says the show's many crew members fear for their health and safety.
"The crew is reluctantly still going to work and are all afraid for their health but worried they’ll never be rehired," the source said.
They also said houseguests have not been briefed on the severity of the pandemic, so they aren't fully aware of what's at risk, and have chosen to keep playing because they believe it isn't really that bad.
They also noted that non-essential businesses have repeatedly been told to shut down in order to combat the virus, so what makes Big Brother Canada any exception?
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