Reality TV buffs will only have to wait two more weeks to watch a fresh batch of young Aussie singles find love on Love Island Australia season three, which premieres on Nine on Monday, October 11.
The show was originally scheduled to premiere a week earlier, but a COVID outbreak among the crew threw production into disarray.
"After working through production issues that have been widely reported, Love Island Australia will now launch on Monday, October 11 at 8.45pm on Channel 9 and 9Now," a Nine spokesman told TV WEEK on Monday.
An insider told So Dramatic that while I'm a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here! had wrapped filming in the region, Love Island was due to begin over the weekend, with members of the Celebrity crew staying on to work on the third season of Nine's hit show.
The insider also divulged that multiple crew members returned positive COVID tests, which caused the halt to production and the changed premiere date.
Aussie sweetheart Sophie Monk will return to host and play Cupid alongside new addition, comedian Stephen Mullan, the narrator, in the reality dating show which promises to deliver another picture-perfect backdrop full of romantic twists and turns.
"I can't wait for everyone to meet the new cast on Love Island – they are sassy, fun, and looking for love, and what better place to find it than the luxurious Love Island villa," Sophie said of the new season.
The Islanders are all hoping to find romance, passion and "the one" where they couple up, stay together, and win over the hearts of the public, with the winning couple taking home $50,000.
Traditionally, the show is filmed somewhere luxe like Spain or Fiji, with the singles regularly seen sunning themselves in the Love Island Villa. However, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the show's contestants will not be scoring an international trip this year.
The show was initially set to film in Port Douglas, Queensland, this year, to retain some of that sunny charm we know and love. However, due to Premiere Anastasia Palaszczuk's strict border closures the decision has been made to move the show to Northern NSW.
It seemed like Byron Bay would be the obvious choice for the backup location, with Love Island last week confirming to TV WEEK that the upcoming season will be filming in Federal, a stunning coastal town a short 25-minute drive from the Byron town centre.
"As a result of the current COVID-19 situation and fluctuating border restrictions, we have decided to move the filming location of the upcoming third season of Love Island Australia to Federal, Northern NSW," ITV Studios Australia CEO & Managing Director, David Mott, said in a statement.
"This decision has been made with the best interests and safety of all cast and crew involved. We have found a brilliant location and can't wait to get started."
As fans will remember, there was no fresh season of Love Island Australia in 2020 due to the height of the pandemic, only further adding anticipation for the upcoming set of singles.
Sophie confirmed to TV WEEK that casting for the 2021 season started in July this year.
Nine's production team found a way to scour the country for the hottest singles without scouting out people in bars, beaches and gyms due to the impacts of the pandemic.
Instead, the production team partnered with dating app Tinder to track down a bunch of eligible guys and gals to populate the island of love.
The first trailer for the upcoming season, which features Sophie in her element, is played to the tune of Down Under by Men At Work.
Swimmers (potentially the new cast?) are seen swimming in a blue-watered paradise while Sophie aptly says, "There are plenty of fish in this sea."
Apart from the first sneak peek, little is known about the 2021 series.