LOVE Island’s summer series has been flung into jeopardy by the coronavirus outbreak, The Sun on Sunday can reveal.
Meetings due to take place next week about plans for the ITV2 show have now been delayed until at least after Easter amid fears over the virus.
And top ITV sources on Saturday night said it was “highly unlikely” the upcoming series will air as planned in June.
One said: “A huge amount of work goes into Love Island and to pull everything together in a very short space of time would be near impossible.
“Casting aside, they need to think about all the paperwork necessary, the show’s insurance and all the tests that cast members must undergo.
“The team are also very conscious that if overseas travel restrictions are not lifted in time, filming in Mallorca as normal will be ruled out of the question.
The Great British Bake Off is also facing the axe after Berkshire locals expressed virus fears
“Not to mention the risks of cast members and crew contracting the virus, or pulling out because their family members have become seriously ill.
“All the signs are pointing towards the show not airing.”
The ITV2 dating show is not the only viewer favourite to be called into question by the outbreak.
The upcoming series of the Great British Bake Off, which usually begins filming with contestants at the end of April, is also set to be postponed.
Britain’s Got Talent live shows are being pushed back as ‘the most responsible thing’ to do
The decision is being raked over after locals in Newbury, Berkshire, expressed fears about an influx of filming crew and cast amid the outbreak.
A second source said: “Crunch talks about Bake Off this year are happening very soon.
“The last thing anyone wants to do is postpone the show, but in the current situation we may find there is just no other choice.”
ITV sources also confirmed that Simon Cowell is holding conversations about the possible postponing of the Britain’s Got Talent live finals.
On Saturday night one said: “We wouldn’t be behaving in a responsible way if we weren’t having conversations about whether or not we should go ahead.
“The safety of everyone involved in the show – including the audiences – is Simon’s paramount concern and if it isn’t safe the live finals will be postponed.”
A spokeswoman for Channel 4 said: “We are monitoring the situation and Public Health England advice very carefully, and are looking at all possible options for producing The Great British Bake Off safely.
“Filming of the series will begin once it is safe to do so.”
An ITV spokeswoman declined to comment, though a source insisted it was “too soon” for a final decision to be made about Love Island 2020.
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A source close the Britain’s Got Talent show said: “Simon has made it very clear that the BGT audience, production team and contestants’ safety is paramount. Obviously, the channel and show production team are in complete agreement. Everyone will continue to monitor the situation and Government advice, but ultimately Simon and everyone involved in the show will do the most responsible thing – which could mean pushing back the live shows.”
“No definitive decision has been made right now but it’s certain if social isolation is still continuing in mid-May, the live shows will automatically be postponed to a later date.”
“BGT was always due to begin airing in April as normal – but nothing is set completely in stone now because events are moving so rapidly. Whatever the eventual schedule, when the series does air, everyone hopes it will bring some much needed happiness to everyone at home during these worrying and unprecedented times.”