‘The White Lotus’ drops Milos Bikovic amid Ukraine controversy

The series has decided to part ways with the actor after Ukraine's Ministry of Foreign Affairs criticised Bikovic's casting over the Serbian-born actor's seeming support for Russia's invasion of Ukraine

February 03, 2024 02:56 pm | Updated 02:56 pm IST

Milos Bikovic

Milos Bikovic | Photo Credit: @bikovic/Instagram

Serbian-Russian actor and film producer Milos Bikovic will no longer be part of the American dark comedy-drama anthology TV series The White Lotus, reported The Hollywood Reporter. He was cast in the third season of the HBO series.

However, now it has decided to part ways with him after Ukraine's Ministry of Foreign Affairs criticised Bikovic's casting over the Serbian-born actor's seeming support for Russia's invasion of Ukraine. According to The Hollywood Reporter, in a January 24 social media post, the ministry asked, "HBO, is it all right for you to work with a person who supports genocide and violates international law?" over a video clip of the statement made by Bikovic's about Ukraine and the annexation of Crimea.

Bikovic has worked in Russia for a decade, got an honour from Vladimir Putin in 2018, and will become a Russian citizen in 2021. In a statement of his own, Bikovic said, "I was honoured to be chosen to be a part of White Lotus, a TV series that I hold in high regard and with colleagues whom I deeply respect. However, my participation is not possible due to reasons beyond the realm of art and I will not bow to any narrative that seeks to compromise my integrity. I would like to thank everyone who stood by me. I wish my colleagues great success in creating the next season."

ALSO READ:‘The White Lotus’ review: Riveting, disturbing viewing along with a fabulous star cast

Bikovic was part of a cast that includes season one regular Natasha Rothwell, Leslie Bibb, Dom Hetrakul, Jason Isaacs, Parker Posey, Michelle Monaghan, Tayme Thapthimthong, Carrie Coon, Christian Friedel, Morgana O'Reilly, Lek Patravadi, Shalini Peiris, Walton Goggins, Sarah Catherine Hook, Sam Nivola, Patrick Schwarzenegger and Aimee Lou Wood. Creator, writer and director Mike White executive produces the series with David Bernad and Mark Kamine.

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