LOVE Island producers are actively looking to cast ex-partner's of current contestants in a bid to spice up the show.
The second ever winter edition of the series has been full of fan speculation around the off camera drama between Olivia Hawkins and Zara Lackenby Brown.
But The Sun can reveal that execs are actively on the lookout to cast ex-boyfriends and girlfriends of the islanders as bombshells.
The show pulled a similar stunt last summer when Gemma Owen's ex Jacques O'Neill made a shock arrival.
One source has told the Sun that producers have even offered to fly out new singletons within days of first approach if they have prior romantic links with the current crop of contestants.
This is despite our previous report of a rigorous casting process which involves extensive medical testing and psychological evaluation which cost thousands of pounds.
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A seperate TV source has revealed procedures would usually take around 3-5 months to complete.
They explained: "In that time not only are people auditioned, but a lot of background checking and social media checks happen. Psychiatric and physical checks also happen."
But the Sun has established one former girlfriend of a current fan favourite was approached and fastracked to enter the villa by production staff as soon as possible.
A source close to the prospective islander has revealed they were apparently offered a flight to South Africa within days of being approached, after producers discoveredshe and her former flame still followed each other on Instagram.
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This comes after dumped star David Salako has revealed the contestants all know that Zara Lackenby-Brown and Olivia Hawkins had a history outside the villa.
It's been proved that the feuding pair already knew each other before signing up to the show based on them liking and commenting on each other's Instagram posts.
However, there's been no on-air mention of this, leaving fans baffled as to why their seemingly friendly relationship on social media has deteriorated on the show.
Addressing the situation on TikTok after his exit from the villa, David said: "Yeah I just want to confirm the beef between Zara and Olivia is 100 percent real. It's something that was discussed in the villa. They told everyone. I think Zara told everyone that she knew Liv, and Liv confirmed."
Olivia and Zara previously starred in a music video together back in 2019 – and fans have also unearthed Instagram comments where the pair were sending each other supportive notes underneath pictures.
However, it's clear there's no love lost between them, which is made even more complicated as they both pursued Tom Clare.
The Sun has approached Love Island for comment.
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