The TOWIE cast landed in the Dominican Republic to film a new series just days ago, and drama is already real. The, frankly, iconic Sims sisters - Frankie, Chloe and Demi - have apparently opted to stay behind in Brentwood instead.
So far, Amber Turner, Courtney Green, Chloe Meadows, Dan Edgar, Amy Childs,Diags, Dani Imbert, Yazmin Oukhellou, Jordan Brook and new faces Elma Pazar and Junaid Ahmed have shared snaps from the Caribbean on their Instagram stories. But the Sims ladies have been uploading content from their sofas.
The sisters were reportedly due to go on the trip but pulled out days before due to 'off-screen disagreements', with a source saying, "Not everyone's happy about the new arrivals. It's ruffled a few feathers behind the scenes.
"There's been some big disagreements off-camera that resulted in the sisters deciding to pull out of going on the trip two days before they were meant to fly out.
"Every year the three sisters are top of the list of the returning cast. They're the biggest characters who bring the sex appeal, glamour and good storylines. Everyone's talking behind the scenes about why they're missing," they told The Sun.
It's not known if the Sims sisters will stay in Essex or if they'll fly out at a later date.
Closer have reached out to representatives of Chloe Sims and TOWIE for comment.
Chloe Brockett, whose future on the show was in doubt after she was reportedly involved in a nightclub 'brawl' with Ella Rae Wise in April, is also still in the UK, fuelling rumours that she may not be involved in the new series.
After the incident, there were reports that Chloe was called in by TOWIE bosses to explain her actions, ahead of filming.
There have also been reports that even if Chloe does return, some of the cast are reluctant to film with her.
The new series of TOWIE will be the first for over seven months after filming was pushed back due to COVID regulations.
An ITVBe source said recently, “TOWIE is coming back with a bang and the cast are off to the Dominican Republic.
"It’s been months in the planning and all the details were signed off today. It is the most flash trip they’ve ever done but given they’ve spent the last two years on home soil the bosses wanted to give the stars – and the fans – a treat."
Is Ella Rae Wise returning to TOWIE?
Ella recently dropped a major hint that she's returning to the show just months after getting the axe.
Ella was taking part in a Q&A with fans on Instagram when one asked, "How did you get on TOWIE?"
She replied, "I was messaged on Instagram by a casting account! I actually thought it was fake at first but I messaged back anyway then it just went from there really".
Ella then added, "It's my pride and joy. Soon be back to where I belong 😜."
We really hope so...
The TOWIE cast members returning for the new series
First up of course it's the Queen of Essex - Chloe Sims. She's one of the longest running cast members and to be honest, TOWIE wouldn't be the same without her.
Confirming that she's still on the show, Chloe wrote on her Instagram Story, "Lots of questions about this... Yes I am still filming TOWIE, no plans to leave. Wishing the departing cast good luck with their futures & looking forward to filming the new series next month."
Chloe's youngest sister Demi Sims is also returning to the show. Demi first made a cameo on the show in 2014 but she became a regular in 2019 and she's been involved in a lot of drama including her intense relationship with Francesca Farago.
The last Sims sister to join TOWIE was Frankie Sims and she too will be back on our TV screens too. Frankie has also gotten involved in some big storylines including her feud with Chloe Brockett, her relationship with Harry Lee and more recently dating Tommy Cole, Love Island's Joe Garrett and Jack Fincham (who also previously dated Chloe B) but they're no longer together.
Liam 'Gatsby' Blackwell
Gatsby is another star still on the show. During the last series viewers saw his relationship with Dani blossom. However, this series will focus on their split after they called it a day just after filming the Christmas special 2021.
Dani was one of the newest stars to join the show but she's managed to escape the cull. It's probably because of her relationship with Gatsby and she's a strong character - remember that feud with Courtney Green?
During the 29th series he had a major falling out with BFF Dani and Gatsby. Here's hoping in 2022 they'll get everything sorted.
She's definitely a stand out star of the show and that's probably why Chloe Brockett will probably return to TOWIE. Following the TOWIE cull news, she hit out at some of her co-stars who mocked the change up.
"I am still part of the cast, I'm getting a few messages asking if I am, I am," she wrote on Instagram.
"But I did just want to put out a quick message and just say that the cast members that remain on the show that are finding it funny about the ones that have been dropped, I find that absolutely disgusting, and I think even people I have publicly argued with, I would never laugh about them losing their job because it's disgusting.
"People that find that funny, karma is a thing and I hope it bites you on the a---."
Chloe has since revealed when TOWIE will return in 2022 however her future on the show is not known following her feud with Ella.
Amber Turner is another cast member who confirmed that she'll be returning to TOWIE when it's back on our TV screens.
Dan Edgar will be returning with his girlfriend Amber. During the last series Amber moved into his flat and the couple bought a dog so viewers can expect to get an insight into their relationship and his friendship with Gatsby.
Saffron will be back in the new series and funnily enough during her break from filming, she made a surprising career move.
Pete hasn't had the easiest time on TOWIE following his infamous relationships with Megan McKenna and Shelby Tribble but viewers (and Anna Williamson) were shocked when it came to light that Pete and BFF Chloe Sims had "crossed the line".
They fell out but during series 28, they've since become friends again but as of recent Chloe unfollowed him on Instagram.
Following his break up with Yazmin, Lockie returned to TOWIE and reunited with his BFF Pete Wicks. He's since gone on to date Love Island 2018 star Megan Barton Hanson, however they've now split.
We know we said Chloe Sims was the Queen of Essex but let's be honest - it's really the iconic Amy Childs. She only returned to TOWIE for the 10 year anniversary but she's here to stay. Expect to hear her and Polly's hilarious one liners and her boyfriend who appeared on First Dates.
Chloe Meadows has confirmed she's back on TOWIE and filming alongside her BFFs.
You wouldn't see Chloe Meadows with her best pal Courtney Green who has also confirmed she's returned to TOWIE in 2022.
Who was axed from TOWIE in 2021?
The list included: best friends Courtney Green and Chloe Meadows, Kelsey Stratford, Clelia Theodorou, Harry Lee, Harry Derbidge, Tom McDonnell and Nicole Bass.
Some stars have since spoken out about not returning to the show, with Clelia confirming rumours and admitted there’s no hard feelings.
During a Q&A with fans Clelia wished only the best for her former co-stars.
When asked if she would be going back to the show that made her famous, she confirmed, “I won’t be returning, no.
“I’ll miss everyone on the show and wish the show well with the new format! I’ve made some amazing friends and memories that I’ll cherish forever.”
TOWIE legend Bobby Norris also revealed that he was stepping back from the show after ten years around the same time.
He wrote on Instagram, “I’m so excited to finally be able tell you guys some news that I’ve been keeping secret.. I have made the decision that now feel’s like the right time for me to take a step back from @towie as a regular cast member to focus on my presenting career.
“After 10 years on TOWIE the show and the fans have been such a huge part of my life, but you haven’t seen the last of me and this is the start of an exciting new chapter!!"
However, some axed cast members later returned to the show later in the year, including Harry Derbidge, Ella Rae Wise, Courtney Green and Chloe Meadows - which led fans to believe that bosses regretted their decision.
Are Georgia Kousoulou and Tommy Mallet still on TOWIE?
As well as the reported 10 cast members we previously discussed, Georgia Kousoulou and Tommy Mallet left too.
They drove off into the sunset shortly before welcoming baby Brody into the world and they've since starred on their own spin-off show.
However Georgia exclusively spoke to Closer and admitted that she'll be back on the show after maternity leave.
During the TOWIE Christmas special viewers saw Ella Rae Wise, Courtney Green, Chloe Meadows and Harry Derbidge all make a return.
When will TOWIE return in 2022?
In January, ITV and Lime Pictures confirmed in a joint statement that the show will return in the summer and the cast will return to filming in June.
"Owing to ongoing challenges posed by Covid, the forthcoming series of The Only Way Is Essex will now be postponed until later in the year," they said.
What happened on TOWIE in 2021?
In July last year and out of the blue, TOWIE bosses announced that the 29th series would be different and wouldn't include the entire cast that featured on the previous season.
Sharing a shock statement on social media they explained, "TOWIE will be evolving with some changes.
"As it looks ahead to future series, the next instalment of our BAFTA award winning show returns to Essex to follow a smaller group of cast members."
They added, "This change allows our cast more time to film their real lives, showing more of their personal passions and professions, alongside their strong bonds and dynamics with family and friends ✨".
Before the statement was issued, insiders teased that axing cast members was because the show wanted to go back to basics and focus on a group of smaller characters instead of a big group. The first series in 2021 had a whopping 47 faces.
A source told The Sun, "With an ever-growing cast of characters it was becoming hard to give the audience any real insight into the lives of those involved.
"Producers want the show to go back to how it used to be at the start where the audience saw much more of each character’s backstory and what they get up to."
The ITVBe show is no stranger to axing cast over the years, with many stars finding themselves shown the door over lack of storylines.
Before their announcement there were reports that a whopping 10 cast members would be axed from the show.
Who returned for the TOWIE Christmas special?
Following TOWIE's huge cull last year, some axed cast members made their triumphant returns to the series for the 2021 Christmas special.
Ella, Courtney Green and Chloe Jane Meadows were casualties of the now legendary 2021 cull but were back in full force by December for some festive frolicks, with Courtney and Chloe M finally confronting Gatsby over his fall out with best pal Chloe Brockett.
WATCH: Chloe Brockett on her secret row with Yaz, feuding with the Sims sisters and Mark Wright returning
Check out: axed TOWIE stars - where are they now?
Jake Hall, series 14 -17
Jake's time on TOWIE was mainly characterised by his on / off relationship with Chloe Lewis and his alleged cheating on her. He finally (sort of) confessed that he'd done the dirty with Megan McKenna in a very emosh scene on a park bench. Ah, precious memories.