Love Island 2021 could feature gay Islanders for first time

Love Island appears to be encouraging gay and lesbian as well as straight and bi singles to apply for this summer’s series.

One of the biggest criticisms of Love Island over the years has been its lack of diversity and representation of LGBT+ people. It looks like that may be about to change, as producers reportedly seek to recruit the most diverse cast ever, invitations to apply via Tinder are being sent to both gay and straight users.

Gay Love Islanders

According to a source who spoke to the Daily Star:

ITV and Love Island teamed up with Tinder earlier this year to find a new batch of islanders. They have been placing the ads strategically inside the app so you have to swipe left or right. The ads have been showing up on both male and female gay accounts as well as on those of straight people.

A statement from an ITV spokesperson confirmed:

Our only stipulation for applicants on Love Island is that they are over 18, single and looking for love.

However, it’s not clear how a villa with a mixture of gay and straight Islanders would work with the current format.

Back in 2017, Love Island’s executive producer Richard Cowles suggested it would be difficult to include lesbian and gay Islanders on the show, saying:

You are trying to create couples. It is not impossible and it is not something that we shy away from... but there is a logistical element which makes it difficult.

Bisexual Love Islanders

The show has previously featured bisexual Islanders, with Sophie Gradon and Katie Salmon coupling up in the 2016 series. However, there haven’t been any same-sex couplings on the UK show since. Ex-Islander Megan Barton Hanson revealed she had hidden her bisexuality over fears of ‘stigma’ during her time on the show.

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