ITV boss Kevin Lygo has joked that ITV2’s Love Island will not air on its main channel next year because it may “scare some old people and they might die”.
The broadcaster’s director of television confirmed on Wednesday at the Edinburgh International Television Festival that he would not move the popular reality dating programme from ITV2 to the bigger channel in 2018.
Lygo said the success of the show, which regularly drew in around 2 million viewers per episode earlier this summer, was down to it being “incredibly well made” and its attraction to ITV2’s key audience of 16 to 34 year olds.
Asked why the programme, which sees young and attractive singletons live in a Spanish villa for weeks on end in a bid to find love and win a cash prize, was particularly successful this year, Lygo joked: “Harder bodies.”
He added: “It was incredibly well made. Any of us who worked on these sorts of programmes know how difficult they are to make.
“Thank God for Love Island to show young people will come in their droves and they will come every night.
“On ITV2 we want only 16 to 34 year olds, it is only commercially sold on them. Love Island comes in and really purified it and all old people have run away.”
He said: “I wouldn’t move it to the main channel because it would scare some old people and they might die.”