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Contestants on the reality TV show "Big Brother Canada" were recently informed about the coronavirus pandemic. They haven't had contact with the outside world since the competition began.
On an episode that aired Wednesday night, the guests were asked to gather in the living room to hear executive producer Erin Brock relate details as to what's happening in the real world, according to Global News.
“House guests, recently I brought you up to speed with what’s going on with COVID-19 around the world. Now I have another update for you. I want you to know what’s happening,” said Brock.
“As of today, March 21, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 globally is 26,673. There have been 11,184 deaths and there are cases in 183 countries and territories. In Canada, there are currently 971 confirmed cases and a total of 12 deaths. The Canadian government has asked all Canadians abroad to come home. The prime minister of Canada and the president of the United States came to an agreement to close the Canada-US border to all non-essential travel.”
“That’s insane,” said house guest, Minh-Ly Nguyen-Cao.
“I don’t know if that’s ever happened in history,” said contestant Vanessa Clements.
Brock assured the "Big Brother Canada" participants that the producers had been in contact with their families that all of them are all still healthy.
“Susanne, we’ve been checking in on your family in Italy. They are quarantined, everyone is healthy and no one is ill,” Brock told Susanne Fuda, who has family living in Italy.
“Are major sports events still taking place?” Hira Deol asked Brock.
“Every major sports league has now been shut down or postponed,” Brock told the house guests.
“What a time for us to be isolated by the world,” said Minh-Ly.
“We’re probably safer in here, legit,” said Susanne, sobbingly.
“Part of this "Big Brother Canada" game is being cut off from the real world, and it’s scary because you do not know what’s going on out there. It makes you grateful for our little family away from home,” Hira said.
Global and Insight Productions announced in a joint statement earlier this week that they will be bringing this eighth season of "Big Brother Canada" to a close earlier than scheduled, as a result of the pandemic.
Ontario is currently under a province-wide shelter-in-place order, with many added restrictions temporarily in place, which helped the production team decide that cancellation was the right decision at this time.
"Big Brother Canada' is a labour of love for so many, and even though it hurts to say goodbye to the season, it’s the right thing to do,” said "Big Brother Canada" host Arisa Cox. “On behalf of the incredible people who put this show together, thank you to everyone who started this journey with us. Please take care and be safe!”
"Big Brother Canada" has yet to announce plans to resume production at a later date. There won't be an official "winner" for season 8 and the fate of the $100,000 prize money will be revealed in the last episode, set to air Wednesday, April 1 at 7 p.m. ET/PT.
The number of coronavirus cases worldwide is approaching a half million at time of writing. Health officials are asking that everyone remain home, and practice proper hygiene at this time.