While you were busy counting down the days, hours, and minutes before the reality show of the summer makes its long-awaited return to screens, it may have escaped your notice that it's already started. Kind of. It turns out there's a Love Island Australia that's already filming. Who knew? And more importantly, why should you care? Can UK viewers even watch the Aussie one anyway, and who's bothered if there's no Caroline Flack and Iain Stirling? Well... Some very observant fans of the ITV2 series have picked up on a crucial detail which may have uncovered the show's biggest twist yet.
It turns out that the Australian version of the show isn't filmed down under as you might expect. They don't quite have the same risk of showers as we do, so why the need to fly to Spain? Well, the Mirror reports that the Aussie cast and crew have done just that, setting up camp in exactly the same place where 2018's crop of UK islanders will be heading soon — Majorca.
After last year's massive surprise twist — a second villa with new female housemates to tempt the boys, and new male contestants to test the girls' loyalties — proved successful, The Sun reported that the show would introduce two different houses right from the word go.
But could the existence of an Australian Love Island, plus the shared filming location hint at an even bigger surprise in store for the upcoming series?
Some fans certainly seem to think so, with many predicting there could be a crossover between the two shows. Plus, their theory would still fit with speculation that the show will kick off with two villas, just one will be full of Australian contestants instead!
It wouldn't be the only surprise in store for the 2018 series, as it's recently been announced that last year's winner, Kem Cetinay will be returning but not in the way you might expect. He won't be back in the villa, as far as we know, but he has signed up to present the show's brand new podcast, The Morning After, alongside radio host and TV presenter Arielle Free. While I'm sure he'll do an absolutely brilliant job, I can't say I'm not a little disappointed that Cetinay's best friend from the villa Chris Hughes won't be joining him on the show, so here's hoping he makes a cheeky cameo at some point.
Meanwhile as the start of this year's show approaches, rumours about the new crop of singletons abound. And producers recently revealed their rather unusual approach to finding them.
According to the Mirror, the Love Island team has been swiping through Tinder to try and seek out contestants for 2018. The show's executive producer told the audience at a Royal Television Society conference, that producers had been "matchmaking" and connecting with "a lot of very good-looking people" on the app.
Senior producer Angela Jain explained the reasoning behind their unexpected method — it was an attempt to avoid recruiting similar personalities to previous years. "We don’t want to cast the same characters every time, we aren’t looking for the next Camilla [Thurlow] or the next Montana [Brown]. That is the opposite of what we’re looking for," she said.
As for who exactly is heading into the villa this year, the 2018 line-up has just been announced and includes a doctor, a West End performer, a stationary sales manager, and an engineer. I'm already excited about the whole new vocabulary I'm going to learn — better clear your schedule!
Love Island 2018 starts at 9 p.m. on Monday, June 4 on ITV2