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The network has renewed the unscripted series, based on a hit British show, for a second season to debut next summer. The pickup comes despite soft linear ratings, although the series has attracted a younger and more female audience than is typical for CBS.
“The passion of Love Island‘s audience is incredible,” said CBS Entertainment president Kelly Kahl. “The intensity of their social media engagement has created tremendous enthusiasm for the series here at the network. We love the show’s creative execution and can’t wait for next season.”
Kahl told The Hollywood Reporter that despite the modest linear ratings for the show — which averages a 0.5 rating among adults 18-49 and about 2.2 million viewers for initial airings — he was encouraged by the show’s digital numbers and social media engagement (a rare position for CBS, which likes to tout its strength in traditional metrics).
“This is an audience we’re chasing, primarily younger women, that CBS doesn’t necessarily speak to on a regular basis and an audience that doesn’t watch linear TV a whole lot,” he said. “I think that’s borne out in our streaming numbers. This is one of the strongest streaming shows we have already. … All the signs around the linear numbers are very, very good. The question for us is can we get the word out and eventually kick it up to the next level?”
The average Love Island viewer is about eight years younger than CBS’ audience as a whole, and the show has performed respectably among women under 35.
“After its first season, the U.K. version exploded via word of mouth and social media to become a huge hit, and its viewership has grown every year,” said Thom Sherman, senior executive vp programming at CBS. “We believe first-season U.S. fans are just as passionate and engaged, and we look forward to building on that foundation with another fun season next summer.”
The U.K. version of Love Island averaged 570,000 viewers in its first season on ITV2 in 2015. It more than doubled that average in season two and has grown every season since then.
The series is produced by ITV Entertainment, an ITV America company. David George, Adam Sher, David Eilenberg, Simon Thomas, Mandy Morris, Ben Thursby, Richard Foster and Chet Fenster are executive producers.
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