ITV launched a probe into whether staff were tipping off agents and taking alleged backhanders over Love Island contestants.
As this year’s winners arrived back in Britain, it emerged bosses quizzed staff on the ITV2 series over concerns about closeness with two talent agencies who regularly represent reality wannabes.
Louis WoodLove Island winners Ekin-Su and Davide have arrived back in the UK[/caption]
Louis WoodThe couple shared a kiss for the cameras[/caption]
The firms — which we are not naming — sometimes approached future contestants just hours after they had signed up to the show.
While there was no suggestion of criminality, it prompted fears staff were tipping off the agents — and earning a cut.
Concerns were raised by the country’s eight leading talent agents, who wrote to ITV.
Some even felt specific Islanders had been given a favourable edit on the ITV2 show, improving their chances of winning.
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ITV’s investigation found no wrongdoing.
A spokesman told The Sun there was “no financial agreement in place” with agents.
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One of the agencies involved — which represents a number of household TV names — is said to have somehow repeatedly discovered contestants’ identities in advance, before signing them up to contracts ahead of the series.
One example allegedly saw a female contestant become a fan favourite before getting a number of lucrative brand deals — of which the agency takes a cut.
Another agency was allegedly recommended by ITV to a previous winner, who then signed with them and bagged big deals.
When rival firms — sometimes up to ten — flew to Majorca to pitch to contestants, they felt decisions had already been made.
A source said: “In recent years there’s become a number of concerns that deals were a foregone conclusion and any lobbying was a waste of time and money.
“That has led to suspicions someone is earning an extra bit of cash to point them to one of two ‘favoured’ agencies.”
ITV said it has a duty of care to help contestants find an agent if they do not have one, but is not involved in which agencies contestants eventually choose.
Louis WoodRunners-up Luca Bish & Gemma Owen[/caption]
Louis WoodTasha Ghouri & Andrew Le Page[/caption]