LOVE Island is close to being cancelled this year amid the coronavirus pandemic, admits ITV boss Kevin Lygo.
The telly chief revealed the channel is running out of time to make the show work in 2020.
Speaking at the Edinburgh Television Festival, he said: "We're approaching the moment of is it feasible? Will Majorca open its doors?
"What signal might it be sending out if we're doing a show where everyone is crammed together slavering over each other, and the rest of the world is told not to go near anyone in the park?"
Lygo also dismissed reports the show will be filmed in Cornwall as an alternative to its regular Majorcan villa.
ITV had looked into the possibility of having in the South West of England but decided it "wouldn't be the same".
In a very honest exchange Lygo said the channel was close to running out of new soap material and anticipated ITV will be forced to show repeats to fill its schedule as the crisis continues.
This week The Sun revealed applications for the show have hit a record high during lockdown with more than 12,000 sex-starved singletons seeking a place on the summer series.
The ITV2 show’s production team are drafting in extra staff to help interview the candidates, despite its future hanging in the balance.
Wannabe islanders will be quizzed over web conferencing tool Zoom in the coming weeks and a shortlist created.
Bosses believe the spike in numbers is due to the applicants not getting any bedroom action during isolation.
A TV insider said: “Applications have gone through the roof since lockdown.
“Never before have so many people applied in this six-week time span.
“Over seventy per cent of the applications have come from 18 to 28-year-olds and the videos being sent in have been more creative than ever as people have more time on their hands.”
The insider added: “Once candidates have been whittled down to a shortlist, they’ll be interviewed face-to-face.”
But not all potential islanders apply through the official channels to reach the villa.
Amber Davies, 22, who won the 2017 series, and Dani Dyer, 24, who finished top in 2018, were scouted by the show’s talent agents.
This year’s summer series is scheduled to be filmed in Majorca. However, bosses have put a contingency in place due to the coronavirus pandemic.
They have said they could delay the start of filming until August to ensure the show can still take place.
Earlier this month, winter series winner Paige Turley, 22, predicted that the isolation measures brought in to reduce the spread of Covid-19 would spark a surge of applicants.
She said: ‘There will be so many more applicants — and they should, they should 100 per cent apply.
“It’s six weeks and you’ll be in the sun, meeting all these hot boys and girls. They should apply.”
Laura Whitmore, 34, is expected to return as the host. She fronted the winter series, having replaced the late Caroline Flack.
Ratings for the last series — which was filmed in South Africa in January — suffered a major slump compared to last summer when Amber Gill and Greg O’Shea emerged victorious.
Just over 2.4million viewers tuned in to see Paige and partner Finn Tapp, 20, secure the £50,000 prize money.
However, during the period that it was on, the series was the most-watched show among viewers aged between 16 and 34.
Source: Read Full Article