Last year Croatia returned to Eurovision with a bang. By sending “The Voice” winner Nina Kraljic, the Balkan nation emerged as an early fan favourite and ultimately qualified for the final for the first time since 2009 and placed 23rd in the grand final.

With this rather positive result, we were feeling confidant that Croatia’s state broadcaster HRT would stick around the contest for years to come. But a recent report suggests the contrary, and is dimming the light in our “Lighthouse”.

Earlier today Croatian daily newspaper 24Sata published a damning report on HRT’s financial situation

The report reveals the broadcaster’s intention to cancel two of its most popular TV shows — “Dancing with the Stars” and “The Voice“, which rumours suggested would once again serve as Croatia’s national selection for Eurovision.

The paper writes that the broadcaster is running out of money after buying the rights to broadcast UEFA Euro 2016 and the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

The auditions for “The Voice” were set to begin imminently, but were canceled over the broadcaster’s dwindling budget. Last year’s show reportedly cost a total of 35 million Kuna (4.6 million euros), making it the network’s most expensive entertainment program.

The report claims that HRT will instead focus on producing two game shows that work within its financial restraints.

Naturally the report leads us to wonder about Croatia’s future at Eurovision.

The country’s broadcaster is known for its constant struggles with money and in the past — that’s 2014 and 2015 — financial crises forced it to withdraw from the contest.

While the report doesn’t mention whether Croatia will participate at Eurovision 2017 in Ukraine, we can only speculate that the situation doesn’t look as good today as it did a few weeks ago.

Thankfully HRT hasn’t made any official announcement regarding their Eurovision participation, so our fingers remain well and truly crossed.

Do you think Croatia might be out of the contest? If you’re in Croatia, would you rather see ESC or a series of low-budget game shows? Let us know in the comments section below!

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Tony
3 years ago

I look at this, and I can’t help getting the feeling that I saw this coming. I think it was earlier this year when Wiwibloggs had their interview with Nina that it became apparent that she was self-funding her trip to Stockholm. Even though the source is questionable, if this is true I’m hoping that they will still have the wherewithal to at least internally select one of the previous winners of The Voice. If they can’t afford it by themselves, at least bring in some outside help which I think Bulgaria did.

khm
khm
3 years ago

Don’t believe about HRT’s financial struggles, because they aren’t true. First of all, they have a lot of money because of their expensive licence fee. Second, people who work there have high salaries. And third, The Voice was the only thing who had a high viewership because Nova TV eats them every night. And fourth, the acting director of HRT complained there are too many bought licensed shows on HRT and too less domestic production. So there’s your reason why is HRT shutting down The Voice.

Polegend Godgarina
Polegend Godgarina
3 years ago

They’d better participate, they have a history of fantastic entries – Lighthouse was my 2nd favorite after Bulgaria this year.

Blaise
Blaise
3 years ago

HRT’s General Director ‘confirmed’ Croatian 2017 participation during the presentation of the ‘Lighthouse’, by claiming that ‘next year, the song will not be selected the way ‘Lighthouse’ got selected’. He also said that Croatia needs Eurovision and that we should never withdraw again. However, political situation changes everything in the upcoming two months.

Rock Me
Rock Me
3 years ago

HRT has money, A LOT OF MONEY.
They’re just full of cr*p.

D
D
3 years ago

They said they’d use the previous winner of The Voice for Eurovision 2017, Ruža Janjiš, not the upcoming winner. I don’t think canceling the show really would raise any doubts because of that, the only thing is the possibility of their poor financial situation.

cheesecake
cheesecake
3 years ago

If they were to withdraw, I think the real problem would be the money. “The Voice” itself doesn’t really have to do that much with their participation – they could just pick someone internally. Or maybe ask the winner of one of the game shows if by any chance they were good singers 😉

Denis
Denis
3 years ago

Pollaski, The Voice has been expensive for other broadcasters too, so I can believe that. The BBC had it as one of their most expensive shows ever produced, and TV4 in Sweden paid expensive money for it to air, only to flop miserably. And Swedish Idol is still really expensive.Everything around them cost. The juries cost money. They might not be relevant but they still ain’t cheap, they demand money for it. And most of the staging is in big national arenas, like the Globe in Sweden, which costs money. The appeal with reality shows is that people will watch… Read more »

Colin
Colin
3 years ago

Just to clarify few details: 1. 24 Hours is a ‘yellow newspaper’ source. Many of their articles have been untrue or at least exaggerated. 2. 24 Hours claim that The Voice has been axed for financial reasons, cause every participant was paid 7000 kunas per show. That was strongly denied by an ex participant Dino Puric on Facebook. Puric hasn’t, however, said that the show’s ending is untrue, but he did confirm that supposed reasons are bogus. 3. Even if there would be no The Voice for 2017 (The thing I would be heavily pissed about, since I am a… Read more »

Colin
Colin
3 years ago

This news comes from 24 Sata (24 Hours), who aren’t exactly reliable source. An ex The Voice participant commented on Facebook that this isn’t quite true. Besides, Croatia already has a new Voice, Ruza Janjis and the next winner would be a potential 2018 representative. IF that is the new way of picking anyway. Relax, I sincerely hope we are returning.

Pollaski
Pollaski
3 years ago

Can someone explain to me how this would happen? First of all, part of the appeal of competitions like the Voice and Dancing with the Stars is that they’re CHEAP to produce! All you need is a stage, some camera’s, and some desperate people with decent voices who think they’re going to become a megastar. Add in a few judges that are happy just reminding the public that they exist, and voila. Second of all, if buying the Euro and Olympics rights makes your station broke—- WHY THE HELL ARE YOU BUYING THEM? That’s six weeks worth of programming every… Read more »

(J)ESC Fanatic
(J)ESC Fanatic
3 years ago

I really hope they stay after the masterpiece they sent this year.
Fingers crossed!

Darren
Darren
3 years ago

Pretty sure they will still participate next year. Croatia got one of their best results of the decade at ESC16. The Voice doesn’t mean anything. They can just internally select someone or hold a new national selection. They will be there. 🙂