A man from South Wales has spoken about his role on ITV2’s hit show Love Island. Lewis Evans is the senior casting producer and has worked on the show since series one.
“I’ve got family in Cwmbran and I live in London. I visit family and friends quite frequently, every few months. And I go back to watch productions at the Congress Youth Theatre.”
Kingston University was his next home where he studied Media and Cultural Studies with Drama.
“I was a member of Congress Youth Theatre for ten years and was in Les Miserables, Honk, Scrooge, Guys and Dolls, and lots of other productions. I also worked for Torfaen Youth and Play Service.”
His break came with a two-week work experience placement on The Paul O’Grady Show when he was kept on as a runner at Olga TV.
Lewis shared some tips for finding work in the TV industry
“Where possible, try to get work experience, write to various companies, be proactive in making contacts. There are lots of TV companies across Cardiff and Bristol. It’s also important to watch TV and actually have a passion for the industry.
“I joined the Love Island casting team as the Assistant Producer on series one and then became casting producer for series two. I am currently the senior casting producer but I’ve worked across other areas as well, which includes producing the dates.
“We keep in touch with former islanders throughout the year, and I’ve worked on spin-off programming including Jack and Dani: Life After Love Island. We usually start the casting process from the beginning of the year, so it’s pretty much a year-round role.”
So what’s a typical day like working on Love Island?
“The working hours vary depending on what’s going on in the villa. We have new bombshells going in first thing in the morning and dumpings that go on until late night so it’s always flexible. Each day I’ll catch up with the casting team and the executive producers, discussing how the islanders are getting on in the villa, any welfare concerns that need to be addressed, and continuing the casting process for any new islanders going in throughout the series.
“We cast the show using various different techniques – sometimes street casting, processing applications received through the show’s website, approaching people through agents and social media. It’s an ongoing process and it’s all about finding the right mix of personalities for the villa.”
I asked him if his mates try to get insider information out of him. He said: “I tell them to watch the show! Of course though, confidentiality is one of the most important parts of the role so I think by now they know there’s no point in asking because I won’t be telling.”
Lewis said he works with a top team and Majorca is a bonus.
“Obviously the location, it’s a great team of people, many of whom have been involved since the first series. It’s always very satisfying to see the islanders going onto other things having been involved in putting them on TV screens in the first place. I still speak to a lot of the former islanders, and it’s great to see so many of them doing so well.
“The casting team work so hard to find the right mix of islanders, so it’s always very humbling to see people enjoying them on screen.”
Other shows on his CV
During his career Lewis has also worked on Take Me Out, Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway, Charlie Brooker’s Newswipe, Dating in the Dark, Survival of the Fittest and Surprise, Surprise.