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ITV confirms Love Island cancellation

ITV had looked at making this year’s Love Island in the UK

UK commercial broadcaster ITV has confirmed that its hit reality series Love Island will not return to screens this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

ITV’s director of television, Kevin Lygo, confirmed today the seventh season, which had been due to air this summer, would now not take place until 2021.

Lygo said: “We have tried every which way to make Love Island this summer but logistically it’s just not possible to produce it in a way that safeguards the wellbeing of everyone involved, and that for us is the priority.

“In normal circumstances we would be preparing very soon to travel out to the location in Mallorca to get the villa ready, but clearly that’s now out of the question.

“We are very sorry for fans of the show but making it safely is our prime concern and Love Island will be back stronger than ever in 2021. In the meantime, Love Island fans can still enjoy all six series of Love Island on BritBox.”

Kevin Lygo

The decision has ramifications for the show’s producer and distributor, ITV Studios, which is already being hit by the production lockdown in place across Europe.

Lygo admitted in an Edinburgh Television Festival controller session last week that ITV Studios had been harder hit than the flagship channel, and the cancellation of Love Island would have a commercial impact on the broadcaster, not to mention the 200-strong team that works on the show.

But he admitted that proceeding with the relationship-driven show did not sit comfortably with him in the current climate, and that the option of producing it in a UK resort had been rejected, suggesting cancellation was likely.

Lygo said: “Will Majorca open its doors to hundreds of production people? Would there have to be a quarantine? And also, what signal might it be sending out if we’re doing a show where everybody’s crammed together, slavering over each other, while the rest of the world is told not to go near anyone in the park? I’m a bit uneasy about that.

“People would be going to Majorca in the next six weeks; is that really viable and feasible now? The team has looked at doing it in Cornwall or somewhere, but we don’t think making it in the UK would be the same show, and we don’t want to not make the same show.”

US broadcast network CBS is also putting its version of the format back from its planned May 21 premiere date, according to Deadline. The first season of the show was filmed in Fiji and domestic US options are now being considered for filming.

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