It's been drama after drama on this season of Married at First Sight Australia, so-much-so that producers have struggled to fit it all into the show.
Have you ever wondered, though, just how much behind-the-scenes wrangling goes into bringing a production like this to air? From encouraging 'affairs' by setting aside secret 'hook-up' rooms, to taking away personal items and even encouraging participants how to dress, our insiders reveal all...
Watch: The best MAFS reactions of all times. Then read on below to find out all of the secrets that went into bringing you the most explosive season of Married at First Sight to date.
- While filming, producers check all "stay" and "leave" cards before the commitment ceremony, making sure their answers align with their "plots".
- Contrary to belief, not all participants meet the experts for psychological testing before their wedding. Since filming, several have claimed they only met the experts at the first commitment ceremony.
- All participants have their personal items taken off them during filming, including phones. However, there were exceptions for the cheaters, who needed to be able to text each other!
- Most participants this year did not audition. In fact, all contestants – except Matthew Bennett – were scouted from events by agents and on Instagram!
- Sources tell Woman's Day Matthew was fast-tracked through auditions after revealing he was a virgin, dubbed as "ratings gold".
- Throughout filming, the participants are not allowed to talk with each other without cameras on them.
- No making money on social media! Contracts stipulated that endorsements and ambassadorships would have to wait until after filming was complete.
- Participants must forgo access to their social media accounts, with Nine, the Aussie network that makes the show, uploading, monitoring and scheduling posts for the cast each day.
- While participants receive a minimum wage, they are not paid for press gigs they're obliged to do. This left a lot of participants low on cash. Melissa, in particular, revealed she was "broke" and "nearly homeless" because she had to give up her job to be on the show.
- The brides and grooms don't get a say about their wedding – they must attend at any venue and location regardless of personal taste.
- Matthew's bride Lauren says she originally did not use the term "lesbian" to describe her brief same-sex hook-up, but was urged by producers to call it a lesbian relationship.
- On home visits, countless Airbnbs are used when real homes are not available. Tamara, Jess and Billy all had stand-in homes organised.
- This season saw an unprecedented number of chain smokers in the cast, so much so that producers had to allocate ciggie breaks!
- Contestants were told exactly how to look in order to suit their character profile. For instance, Jess was told to wear only tight, revealing clothing, while Mel was told to wear minimum make-up.
- Sam's diary cam was never shown because it was "lost by producers"...
- There's a spare room for secret meet-ups that the cast nicknamed the "couple swapping dungeon" – where Sam and Ines had secret chats!
- Dino was called in at the last minute after Mel's original husband pulled out.
- Sam was given freedom during the Gold Coast weekend so his affair with Ines could seamlessly happen.
- It was clear from the start Jess had no interest in her country groom Mick, 31, but after overhearing Jess tell a friend that she was "being praised for causing drama" by the show's producers, the farmer was left devastated by her conniving ways.
- Sam and Ines never slept together – an editing fail reveals Ines went to bed in one set of underwear, but woke up in a different pair. Sam himself has since come out and said their 'affair' was fake.
- The social media team requires all contestants follow each other, and when contestants would unfollow certain people, the team would quickly follow back on their behalf.
- While things got physical between feisty brides Cyrell and Martha, Woman's Day hears two of the grooms also came to blows during one of the dinner parties, but it wasn't captured on film.
- The intruders were a last-minute idea, with Billy, Tamara, Susie and Dan given three days to prepare!
- At one stage during filming, several sources claimed Jessika's brother Rhys had a rendezvous with someone from the MAFS camp.
- Woman's Day discovered ex-stripper Bronson, 34, was texting an ex throughout filming. A source claims he was telling her it was a mistake going on the show (not surprising, given how disastrously his marriage to Ines turned out!).
- Martha wanted to tell Tamara about Dan and Jess' affair, but producers told her to act supportive of Jess to keep the storyline alive.