If you thought there was a lot of drama between the cast members on Love Island, you might be shocked to learn that there's even more going on behind the scenes of the show. Caroline Flack began hosting the U.K. version of the hit romance dating show when it was brought back for a second run in 2015.
After intense speculation began surrounding an assault charge against the British host, she announced that she was stepping back from the show. What happened with the Caroline Flack assault? Read on to find out why she left Love Island, and who was already announced to take her place.
What happened with the Caroline Flack assault charges?
Because Caroline has been the one staple of the five seasons of the Love Island reprisal (aside from narrator Iain Stirling, of course), it was shocking when she announced that she would not be returning for the sixth season. The upcoming season of Winter Love Island was set to begin filming in South Africa in January of 2020, making fans wonder if there was a pressing reason why she removed herself from the show.
Caroline announced the news of her shocking departure on her Instagram stories on Dec. 17, according to CNN.
"There have been a significant number of media reports and allegations in regard to my personal life," she wrote. "While matters were not as have been reported I am committed to co-operating with the appropriate authorities and I can't comment further on these matters until the legal process is over."
"However, Love Island has been my world for the last five years, it's the best show on telly," she continued. "In order not to detract attention from the upcoming series, I feel the best thing I can do is stand down from Series 6."
"I want to wish the incredible team working on the show a fantastic series in Cape Town," she also stated.
Caroline went on to thank her fans for supporting her through a difficult time.
"And on a really personal level. I have never experienced such kindness and love in my whole life," she wrote in another Instagram story. "Not just from friends and family who are always the greatest but also from total strangers who send messages to me offering help and understanding... Please know that I see them and my boyfriend Lewis. I love you x."
The news of her exit comes on the heels of a fairly dramatic week for the host. The 40-year-old host was arrested on Dec. 13 at her London home following an alleged fight between her and boyfriend, tennis player Lewis Burton. She was charged with assault by beating, and is expected to next appear in court on Dec. 23.
The couple is still together, and Lewis even took to Instagram to defend Caroline. According to BBC.com, Lewis wrote on his Instagram stories on Dec. 16 that Caroline was "the most lovely girl."
He then wrote, "I'm tired of the lies and abuse aimed at my girlfriend. This is not a witch hunt this is someone's life."
On Dec. 18, Lewis posted an Instagram story of a picture of him and Caroline with the heart emoji.
Who will replace Caroline Flack on Love Island?
Because filming Season 6 is commencing only a month after Caroline's news, the search was quickly on to find the right replacement for her. Though there hasn't been official confirmation yet, it's been widely reported that Laura Whitmore will take Caroline's place as the host of Love Island.
Laura is no stranger to hosting an ITV reality show. The 34-year-old has hosted I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! NOW!, and interestingly, was the replacement for Caroline Flack on that show.
She also worked on Survival of the Fittest as a host in 2018, which was produced by the same company as Love Island.
Laura also has a special connection to Love Island, as she's been dating narrator Iain Stirling since 2017. With Laura's rumored hiring on the show, it's also been hinted that she and Iain will co-host the series together.
Radio host and TV presenter Maya Jama was an early favorite to get the coveted hosting gig, but she's apparently been edged out because of Laura's personal connection to the show.
Whether or not Caroline will ever "get the text" to be able to return to Love Island remains to be seen.