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Is Married At First Sight Australia scripted?

The show's tenth season is currently airing on E4

Bronte and Lyndall at MAFS Australia dinner party© NINE,Channel 4
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
April 11, 2023
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The latest season of Married At First Sight Australia is well underway on E4 and it's safe to say this season could be the most dramatic yet!

The programme has become a favourite amongst reality TV lovers up and down the nation thanks to its unique format that sees a group of couples, who meet for the first time at the altar, take part in an experiment that puts their relationship to the test. But just how much of it is real? 

WATCH: MAFS Australia: Sandy confronts Dan after pocket-dialing scandal

Is MAFS Australia scripted?

The show is billed as an "unscripted reality series", meaning cast members don't follow a physical script. 

However, previous contestants have spoken out about how much the producers are involved in the filming process. 

Former cast member Olivia Frazer previously said that while there isn't a "physical script", contestants are sometimes asked to rephrase sentences. "You have to repeat back the questions producers ask you, which is why it sometimes sounds scripted," she said in an Instagram Q&A. 

mafs caitlin and shannon© Photo: Channel 4
MAFS Australia is an "unscripted" reality show

Former contestant Sam Ball, who appeared in season six of the show, claimed that the show is "scripted" and that the experts are told what to say through an earpiece during the commitment ceremonies. 

MORE: Married at First Sight Australia's Jesse Burford reveals truth behind reunion with 'cheating' Claire Nomarhas

MORE: Are Bronte and Harrison from Married at First Sight Australia still together?

"[The producers] tell you what to say, they stand there and ask you questions until you give them the answer they want," he said. "The experts at the dinner parties and commitment ceremonies, they don't talk to you they're getting told things through an earpiece. You can hear what's getting said to them through an earpiece and they just regurgitate it out to you, so they’re just actors."

Sam isn't the only former contestant who has claimed that the show isn't wholly authentic. Jono Pitman previously said: "They're always fishing for one-liners. My famous line was, 'She wasn't what I ordered' when my partner, Clare, was walking down the aisle.

Melissa and Josh, wedding ceremony on MAFS© NINE
The marriages are not legally binding

"They got me to say it a thousand different times."

It's also worth mentioning that the marriages on the show aren't legally binding. The TV show's broadcaster, Channel Nine, told Now To Love: "In order to comply with the Australian Marriage Act (1961) which requires one month and one day notification, a marriage in law was not conducted."

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