The producer of Big Brother in Germany has branded the show's famous house "the safest place" in the country amid the coronavirus outbreak.
The long-running reality show began its 13th season at the start of February during the early stages of the pandemic but as the situation developed, the housemates were informed about events in the outside world and no new contestants were allowed to enter the house.
Family and friends of the remaining housemates have reportedly begged them all to remain in the house, which is situated in Cologne, the most affected area in Germany.
"Cancelling the show wasn't an option, but if one of the people had told us they wanted to be with their family, we would have let them," producer Rainer Laux told The Guardian. "At the end of the day, it's just television.
"A lot of relatives begged the contestants to stay in the house. It's the safest place in Germany right now: you are effectively already under quarantine.
"It's also the only place in Germany that doesn't need to apply any social distancing measures, or handwashing routines, because we know all the contestants are healthy.
"The celebrities who were introduced to the house later on were all tested beforehand. If Angela Merkel had wanted to give her corona address to the nation from inside the Big Brother house, we would have let her in."
Over 60,000 people in Germany have tested positive for COVID-19 so far, with 541 losing their lives.Follow us on Twitter @SMEntsFeed and like us on Facebook for the latest entertainment news alerts.