It’s the social experiment that has sparked tears, betrayal and a slew of failed romances over two jam-packed months of shocking twists and turns.
And Married At First Sight alum Jono Pitman has revealed the behind-the-scenes tricks that producers use to whip up enough drama to fill four episodes a week.
From booze-fulled dinner parties to the ‘set up’ affair between Davina Rankin and Dean Wells, these secrets will no doubt leave viewers just as shocked as the onscreen antics themselves.
Buckle up! The behind-the-scenes tricks that Married At First Sight producers use have been revealed
Set up? Last year’s contestant Jono Pitman claimed bosses would have most certainly told Davina Rankin and Dean Wells to ‘go for it’ and pursue their affair
The ‘set up’ affair between Dean and Davina
Bikini model Davina, 26, and executive Dean, 40, were filmed texting each other and met up for a secret date.
They then plotted to couple up during an illicit meeting after sneaking off from their partners at the dinner party – a liaison that was captured by film crews.
Jono, who appeared on the show last year, claimed producers would have most certainly told the contestants to ‘go for it’ and pursue the affair.
‘I felt bad for them. They would’ve been encouraged by producers and producers would’ve helped set it up,’ he told TV WEEK.
Dinner parties filled with booze to encourage drama
Itching for drama: Pitman alleged that the contestants are given ‘endless’ drinks and ‘not much food’ to ensure they get a tad tipsy and spark controversial conversations
Pitman alleged that the contestants are given ‘endless’ drinks and ‘not much food’ to ensure they get a tad tipsy and spark controversial conversations.
‘You’re full of booze. There are endless drinks available, and there’s not much food on offer,’ he claimed.
The reality star also claimed the dinner parties would stretch into the early hours of the morning, with camera crew sticking around to capture the conversations ‘getting out of hand’.
Some contestants don’t apply for the show
Interesting: Jono (pictured) confirmed that sometimes people didn’t apply for the show – and admitted he was headhunted at a football match
This series has been rampant with speculation that some of the contestants were paid actors hired to stir up drama.
And Jono confirmed that sometimes people didn’t apply for the show – and admitted he was headhunted at a football match.
The show’s executive producer Tara McWilliams told The New Daily last month that she will ‘personally’ audition all contestants before they go on the show.
Meanwhile Nine’s head of content Adrian Swift told the Herald Sun that network bosses had a say on which contestants were in the ‘final mix’.
Priority was placed on making ‘interesting television’ rather than ‘the best matches we can find’. ‘We go on the casting tour and we meet people (prospective contestants). The psychs (Aiken, Stratford, Schilling) don’t come on the casting tour with us,’ he explained.
‘I’m not going to be disingenuous and say we pick them purely on whether they’re going to be a great match.’
Old footage is reused and one-liners are re-filmed
Hmm: The camera crew would reportedly reuse old footage to avoid having to film contestants waking up. They would also allegedly refuse to let the couples turn off their mics
Jono claimed once the camera crew didn’t want to film him waking up at four in the morning so they reused old footage instead.
He also alleged that they were constantly on the lookout for catchy one-liners – and would make contestants endlessly repeat them until they were happy with how it sounded.
The former groom explained that the camera crew were always there and ready to capture everything.
‘They constantly tried to film me. If I didn’t want to be on camera, I’d switch off my mic. They’d tell me to turn it back on,’ he claimed.
Romantic dates get cut short
Tick tock: The couple’s romantic dates each week were reportedly restricted by time and cut short – even if participants wanted to continue them
Each week the couples were sent out on dates to help build up their intimacy and bond in between the ceremonies.
They ranged from picnic dates on the beach to helicopter rides and crazy golf sessions – but this year’s contestant John Richardson, 54, claimed producers made sure the dates were timed.
He alleged the one-on-one sessions were restricted by time and cut short – even if participants wanted to continue them.
The relationship experts offer little input
Rumour has it: Jono claimed the love experts John Aiken, Mel Schilling, and Dr Trisha Stratford have little interaction with the participants
Jono claimed the love experts John Aiken, Mel Schilling, and Dr Trisha Stratford have little interaction with the participants.
He claimed he spent ‘half a day’ at most with John Aiken throughout the whole filming process.
Instead, Pitman alleged that there are other psychologists on set for contestants to confide in about their struggles.
Jono attributed one particular expert with helping him through some ‘dark times’ and said he was the ‘polar opposite’ of the onscreen advisors.
Daily Mail Australia has contacted a Channel Nine representative for comment.