EXCLUSIVE! Married at First Sight secrets exposed

The women of the show have revealed the casting process, how long they film for and signing contracts 👀

married at first sight australia is it real

by Daisy McLure |
Updated on

Martha Kalifatidis: 'Dinner parties lasted 15 hours - it was a pressure cooker'

The climax of each week on MAFS was undoubtedly the explosive dinner parties – filled with arguments, confrontations and flirty interactions. And now Martha tells Closer just what went on behind the scenes during the boozy gatherings.

Martha, 32, says, “The dinner parties go on for 15 hours – and you’re dressed up and ready for it at 10am in the morning. They take you to set, and you’re kept in different holding cells while they’re getting everything set up. You can’t speak to the other couples. It’s just part of the reality of TV – you’re waiting around, and you become really irritated and uncomfortable and hungry and tired. So then when you go into the dinner party, you’re ready to kick off. It’s like a pressure cooker.”

married at first sight martha
Martha says filming was tiring ©E4

She adds, “And some of the commitment ceremonies went on until 4am – sometimes we even came back the next day, in the same clothes and make-up, to finish filming. You’re all so tired that it’s no wonder people are all in really bad moods.”

Heidi Latcham: ‘It’s such an intense process – from casting to the very end’

Like Love Island here in the UK, it seems that MAFS Australia’s casting process is a combination of producers approaching potential contestants and applications. And Heidi tells Closer that after years of dating the wrong guys, she decided to apply to the show – but was not prepared for the intensity of both the application process, and the show itself.

Heidi, 40, says, “I applied for the show on the very last day they were accepting applications – I was at a point in my life where I’d resigned from my job, I’d moved to a new town and I really wanted to meet someone. So I thought, ‘Stuff it!’ and applied.

married at first sight heidi crying
heidi reveals things got deep with mike ©Channel Nine

“It was such an intense process! You have to fill out millions of forms and questionnaires, and send videos and more photos. And then you do that again and again. They test you so much – it was relentless! Three months later, I was walking down the aisle, and I had only been told two weeks before that I’d be on the show.”

Heidi – who was paired up with groom Mike – continues, “I really thought that the experiment itself would be a light, fun thing to do and, if I also met the person of my dreams, that would be amazing, but if I didn’t, I’d still learn a lot. How wrong I was! It was full-on and definitely the most intense thing I’ve ever done, from start to finish. It wasn’t fun, it was deep. You’re filming so much, you’re with your partner 24/7 and it’s so confrontational. You learn a lot about yourself, whether you want to or not. There’s nowhere to hide.”

Check out: Love Island - which couples from all the series are still together?


all love island couples CLOSER slider updated

Love Island couples1 of 42

Hannah Elizabeth and Jonathan Clark (2015): SPLIT

Remember when they, like, got engaged on the show? That one didn't quite last...

Love Island couples2 of 42

Luis Morrison and Cally Jane Beech (2015): SPLIT

They had the first ever Love Island baby but in September 2018 they confirmed they'd split.

Love Island couples3 of 42

Jordan Ring and Zoe Brown (2015): SPLIT

Absolutely DID NOT work IRL. Neeext.

Love Island couples4 of 42

Jessica Hayes and Max Morley (2015): SPLIT

Still fancy Max in a huge way, not gonna lie.

Love Island couples5 of 42

Katie Salmon and Adam Maxwell (2016): SPLIT

Adam claimed he was '100 percent single' shortly after leaving the villa and, um, that was that. #Kadam; gone but never forgotten.

Love Island couples6 of 42

Rykard Jenkins and Rachel Fenton (2016): SPLIT

At least they lasted 18 months. Not bad going...

Love Island couples7 of 42

Scott Thomas and Kady McDermott (2016): SPLIT

Scott and Kady managed a year before splitting in 2017.

Love Island couples8 of 42

Nathan Massey and Cara de da Hoyde (2016): STILL TOGETHER

They've got their little Love Island baby and everything and are very much happily married.

Love Island couples9 of 42

Malin Andersson and Terry Walsh (2016): SPLIT

He did date fellow Love Island-er Emma-Jane Woodhams eight months in actual real life before calling it a day. AH WELL.

Love Island couples10 of 42

Gabby Allen and Marcel Somerville (2017): SPLIT

Gabby dumped Marcel after he was apparently caught cheating as they holidayed TOGETHER. Blimey.

Love Island couples11 of 42

Jamie Jewitt and Camilla Thurlow (2017): STILL TOGETHER

An absolute success story of Love Island 2017, Jamie and Camilla and Jamie are still the CUTEST of couples.

Love Island couples12 of 42

Sam Gowland and Georgia Harrison (2017): SPLIT

Sam seems to be doing alright for himself on Geordie Shore, so we don't think he's too gutted.

Love Island couples13 of 42

Olivia Attwood and Chris Hughes (2017): SPLIT

The couple were plagued with cheating rumours throughout their relationship (who can forget that whole Chris Hughes and Katie Price debacle?). Since their ITVBe show Crackin' On ended, Olivia's confirmed she's back with ex-boyfriend Bradley Dack.

Love Island couples14 of 42

Alex Bowen and Olivia Buckland (2016): STILL TOGETHER

Alex and Olivia are married and literally as strong as ever. We like to live vicariously through them, to be honest.

Love Island couples15 of 42

Tyla Carr and Jonny Mitchell (2017): SPLIT

Oh it was never gonna last, was it?

Love Island couples16 of 42

Kem Cetinay and Amber Davies (2017): SPLIT

TheLove Island2017 winners split in December 2017; five months after the finale.

Love Island couples17 of 42

Montana Brown and Alex Beattie (2017): SPLIT

These two split just weeks after returning to the UK. Sad times.

Love Island couples18 of 42

Dom Lever and Jess Shears (2017): STILL TOGETHER

Jess and Dom are SO together, in fact, they got 'married' on Good Morning Britain on Valentine's Day 2017. They then got, y'know, properly married.

Love Island couples19 of 42
CREDIT: Shutterstock

Sam Bird and Georgia Steel: SPLIT

You know how this one went. Sam accused Georgia of cheating on him with her ex, which she denied. It's safe to say they didn't split on the best of terms.

Love Island couples20 of 42
CREDIT: Shutterstock

Zara McDermott and Adam Collard: SPLIT (apparently)

Zara and Adam called it quits at the beginning of 2019. WAH.

Love Island couples21 of 42
CREDIT: Shutterstock

Megan Barton-Hanson and Wes Nelson: SPLIT

Megan and Wesdidmove in together, but announced their split in January 2019 following rumours Wes was getting close toDancing on Icepartner Vanessa Bauer. Uh oh.

Love Island couples22 of 42
CREDIT: Shutterstock

Josh Denzel and Kaz Crossley: SPLIT

Josh and Kaz announced their split in February 2019, with Kaz saying: "Sometimes things don't go the way you planned, but you have to be grateful for the journey. Thank you for everything especially showing me how to love myself again."

Love Island couples23 of 42
CREDIT: Shutterstock

Samira Mighty and Frankie Foster: SPLIT

Frankie reportedly cheated on Samira and that was that. Done. Over. thank u, next.

Love Island couples24 of 42
CREDIT: Shutterstock

Laura Anderson and Paul Knops: SPLIT

There's no bad blood betweenLaura and Paul, but they split months after making it to the final of the show.

Love Island couples25 of 42
CREDIT: Shutterstock

Jack Fincham and Dani Dyer: SPLIT

Dani released a statement via Instagram Stories (how very 2018) announcing thewinning 2018 couple had SPLIT, before they got back together just days later. Hmm.However fast forward to April 2019 and Jack announced they'd split.

Amber Gill and Greg O'Shea26 of 42

Amber Gill and Greg O'Shea

Amber and Greg were together for less than two weeks but managed to win over the nation and Love Island 2019. But before they could even make things official they split, with Greg reportedly dumping Amber by text.

Tommy Fury and Molly-Mae Hague27 of 42

Tommy Fury and Molly-Mae Hague

They faced an obstacle when Maura entered the villa and turned Tommy's head but he decided to stick with Molly-Mae and the rest is history... They surprisingly came runner up during the Love Island 2019 final but they're happy in a relationship.

Maura Higgins and Curtis Pritchard28 of 42

Maura Higgins and Curtis Pritchard

Probably one of the most shocking Love Island recouplings was definitely Maura and Curtis. Against all odds the pair made it to the final and weeks after leaving the villa they became an official couple. They lasted eight months before splitting, with Maura linked to her Dancing on Ice co star and reports they'd been keeping up a 'showmance' for months.

India Reynolds and Ovie Soko29 of 42

India Reynolds and Ovie Soko

Ovie and India have definitely been the most successful bombshells of all time. The basketball player entered the villa during Casa Amor and India joined the show just weeks before the final. Needless to say, we were obsessed with them but they've since called it quits.

Belle Hassan and Anton Danyluk30 of 42

Belle Hassan and Anton Danyluk

Belle and Anton just missed out on the Love Island final and didn't seem to be spending a whole lot of time together back in the UK. Sure enough they split after five weeks, with Belle reportedly freaked out by his Craig David obsession. There's since been speculation that they'll reunite but the reality stars are yet to confirm anything.

Harley Brash and Chris Taylor31 of 42

Harley Brash and Chris Taylor

Despite being latecomers to the Love Island villa, Harley and Chris won the public over - even after their drama following the Sidebar of Shame challenge. Two weeks after leaving the villa they called it quits.

Jourdan Riane and Danny Williams32 of 42

Jourdan Riane and Danny Williams

Jourdan and Danny left the villa shortly after the Casa Amor stint and after confirming they were in a relationship they moved in together. However in October, Jourdan ended their relationship following reports Danny was partying with random women.

Joanna Chimonides and Michael Griffiths33 of 42

Joanna Chimonides and Michael Griffiths

Michael left us - and the villa - shook when he decided to recouple with Joanna, leaving Amber single. Despite the awkwardness, Michael and Joanna seemed to kind of be working - until she was dumped from the island and then he said he still has feelings for Amber. He was then dumped from the villa and Joanna was then spotted 'kissing' Michael at a festival. Michael has since sparked rumours that he's recoupled with another Casa Amor star.

Lucie Donlan and Joe Garratt34 of 42
CREDIT: Getty Images

Lucie Donlan and Joe Garratt

Lucie and Joe had a rough time in the Love Island villa, especially after thesandwich maker was accused of "gaslighting" his other half. Post villa they revisited their relationship back in the UK but split in late 2019.

Love-island-couples35 of 42

Paige Turley and Finn Tapp (2020): TOGETHER

Paige and Finn coupled up as soon as Finn entered the house as the one of the first boy bombshells and stayed thick as thieves throughout the whole series without even a hint of head turn. They've made things work on the outside, spending coronavirus lockdown at Paige's family home in Scotland, and have recently moved to Manchester.

Love-island-couples36 of 42

Siânnise Fudge and Luke Trotman (2020): TOGETHER

Despite Siânnise struggling at the start thanks to her love rival Rebecca Gormley, Luke did eventually couple up with Siânnise and they've been together the whole time. They spent coronavirus lockdown in Luton with Luke's fam and have recently moved into a flat in the capital.

Love-island-couples37 of 42

Demi Jones and Luke Mabbot

Luke and Demi were the shock last minute couple who made it to the final after their respective rollercoaster rides in the villa.They lasted a valiant four months but spending lockdown apart meant they were the first to split in June.

Love-island-couples38 of 42

Ched Uzor and Jess Gale

Jess was left heartbroken when her twin, Eve, was the first to be dumped from the villa and struggled to form a connection with any of the lads - until Ched showed up during Casa Amor. They made it to fourth place but split due to being separated during lockdown.

Love-island-couples39 of 42

Mike Boateng and Priscilla Anyabu

Another Casa Amor success story, Mike was single when he went into the villa next door and met Priscilla. They spent lockdown together and are still going strong.

Love-island-couples40 of 42

Callum Jones and Molly Smith

Callum broke the heart of fan favourite Shaugna Phillips when he returned to the main villa from Casa Amor with Molly. But the new couple turned out to be super sweet. Back in the UK, they both live nearby to one another in Manchester and are still together.

Love-island-couples41 of 42

Nas Masood and Eva Zapico

The nation WASN'T pleased when Nas returned from Casa Amor with Eva, leaving Demi single, and the couple were the next to be booted. Despite spending lockdown apart, they've been meeting up (at a safe distance!) throughout the pandemic and recently insisted that they're still together.

Love-island-couples42 of 42

Connor Durman and Sophie Piper

Connor and Sophie were an original couple but when Connor was dumped from the villa and Sophie didn't follow, the future became uncertain. They did hook up again after arriving back in the UK but never went official and last featured on each others' social media back in February.

Closer magazine
Get the best celeb interviews in Closer magazine each week ©Closer magazine

WATCH: Love Island's Danny and Jourdan defend Michael dumping Amber | It Is What It Is or That's Muggy


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Melissa Lucarelli: ‘I couldn’t speak about the show for two years!’

married at firs sight melissa
with her husband dino ©Channel 4

She was known for her bubbly and talkative personality, in contrast to her quiet and spiritual husband Dino – and now Melissa isn’t holding back about her experience on MAFS and reveals the contestants all had to sign contracts to keep the show’s secrets from being leaked.

Melissa, 38, tells Closer, “There are really extreme contracts – you had to sign them before you were on the show. The contracts prevented you from speaking about the show or what went on behind the scenes – and also from doing any other TV shows with any other networks for two years. It was fine keeping quiet – but it was annoying not being able to defend myself at times. I’m glad the two-year time limit is up.

“You’re also not allowed to use any social media during filming or to post about the show before it’s aired. It’s so funny – before the show aired, I’d just got Instagram and when the show finished airing, I had built up around 10,000 followers. I had to learn how to live the Instagram influencer life quickly!”

Get the best celeb interviews in Closer magazine each week.

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