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Friday, 20 April, 2001, 11:26 GMT 12:26 UK
Legal row after Big Brother exodus
Pil
Psychology student Pil and two others quit on Saturday
The makers of the Danish version of Big Brother are taking to the courts to try and gag three participants of the reality TV game show who quit the programme.

The 12 contestants on Big Brother signed contracts with TVDanmark which gave the programme makers control over media access, with a possible $12,000 (£8,300) fine if the contract was broken.

Søren
Søren: Part of the exodus from Big Brother
But 32-year-old psychology student Pil, and 25-year-olds Søren and Christian have threatened to reveal their experiences on the show after walking out of the Big Brother house on Saturday.

Mikkel Faurholdt, a spokesman for TVDanmark, told BBC News Online: "They just walked out. They told the media outside the house that they are leaving because they want to destroy the programme.

'Salute'

"That is their salute to the public."


This has made it more dramatic than we had ever dreamed

Mikkel Faurholdt, TVDanmark
The programme has become front page news in Denmark, echoing the success of the British version of the programme which captured media attention last summer.

There are just four contestants left on the programme, which is due to finish on 10 May.

"They are unhappy because they want to speak to who they want to," said Mr Faurholdt.

Christian
Christian, along with Søren and Pil, want to speak to the press
He added: "They have asked their lawyers to cancel the contract but we expect them to follow the contract."

The trio's abrupt departure came as a shock to the programme makers, said Mr Faurholdt.

"A few weeks ago some of the participants discussed the possibility of leaving but they stayed at the time."

'Great show'

He added: "We are disappointed. We were having a great show but this has made it more dramatic than we had ever dreamed."

TVDanmark and lawyers acting for the trio will attend a court hearing on Monday to decide if the three contestants can break the contract.

Some legal experts believe the contract violates their constitutional freedom of expression.

The channel is also considering a lawsuit against daily tabloid Ekstra Bladet, which allegedly paid £170,000 for exclusive rights to interview the contestants.

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See also:

17 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Dee big winner of Big Brother
16 Nov 00 | Entertainment
Life with Big Brother
16 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Big Brother's Craig still in spotlight
10 Nov 00 | Archive
Life on TV November 12 2000
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