Feb. 3 (UPI) -- Actor Milos Bikovic, a Serbian national who has Russian citizenship, has confirmed he will not appear as planned in White Lotus Season 3, which is set in a Thailand resort.
Bikovic was set to star alongside 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 for the next chapter of filmmaker Mike White's upscale vacation anthology dramedy.
But HBO, the network behind the show, is recasting the role he was supposed to play after receiving criticism from Ukraine's Ministry of Foreign Affairs because Biković has not publicly condemned Russian's 2022 invasion of Ukraine, even though to do so could have landed him in prison in Russia.
"I was honored 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," Bikovic said in a statement.
"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."