After nine weddings, five long-term relationships and 25 babies, Australia’s favourite bush fairy tale, Farmer Wants a Wife is back and there’s a whole lot of love in the air!
This year, five farmers — Farmer Andrew, Farmer Brad, Farmer Brenton, Farmer David and Farmer Matt are opening their homes to five lucky ladies, and according to the numerous trailers released before the season premiere on Monday, April 10, every single one of them finds love!
In an interview with Mediaweek, head of reality at the Seven Network Sylvia D’Souza revealed that there were “a couple of things” that were “different” this year which aided in the high success rate.
“We have a new production team on Farmer this series, through Eureka production. At the helm was executive producer Janine Cooper of Bachelor fame,” she said. “I think she embraced the ethos of Farmer front and centre and kept the series focused on real love and the drama around falling in love and nothing else.”
While D’Souza admitted she always “bangs on” about “real love”, Cooper made it happen.
“The results speak for itself,” she said.
Sylvia D’Souza reveals why Farmer Wants a Wife is such a successful show
For D’Souza, the success of the show boils down to one thing: genuine farmers.
“It’s really authentic,” she said. “You get down-to-earth farmers who don’t participate in reality TV normally. People talk about ‘authentic’ and ‘genuine’, which becomes a buzzword that has no meaning, but in this show, it’s real and I think the audience sees that.”
While some farmers in the past haven’t found their perfect match, this year, the farmers were on a mission to find someone who they connected with.
“These guys came into it with such genuine and open hearts. That’s what made this series successful. They were open to finding real love and they were determined. Their mindsets were great.”
As usual, the five men were able to choose the ladies they wanted to get to know, but according to D’Souza, it was the women in their lives who submitted their applications or urged them to apply.
“Generally, women apply for them,” she said. “They don’t normally put their own hats in the ring. It’s their mothers and the sisters. They convince the farmers or they apply in secret. It’s amazing the women of this world.”
Sylvia D’Souza on Samantha Armytage’s new role
Previous years has seen host Natalie Gruzlewski host the series, and more recently, in 2022, Samantha Armytage joined as her “cupid-in-arms”; however, in 2023, the roles have been reversed.
When asked about the casting decision, D’Souza said: “It’s a good question. I think everyone wants to know that. I would say both Sam and Nat resonate well with the Seven audience, but with the production schedule, it was just an opportunity to try something new this season.”
She added: “What I love about both women is their respect and support for each other. They’re in a class of their own. They are genuinely warm, and kind people and I’m just really proud to be part of that camaraderie.”
D’Souza also said that Both Armytage and Gruzlewski were “very invested” in the popular show, with D’Souza even pointing out that they “live and breathe” it.
“They’re always asking, ‘what can we do?’ Sam’s offered up people and Nat’s the same. She gets stopped on the streets all the time…and whatever people give to them, they pass it on.”
The farming communities embrace Farmer Wants a Wife
One aspect of the series is the farming communities in which the farmers live and work in, and according to D’Souza, the people embrace the show.
“That’s the thing about country living, everyone’s much more relaxed. They’re all about community and that’s what you get a sense of, is this community spirit. I get to drive into every kind of little town there is and have a chat with everyone. They’re all so welcoming to the cast and crew.”
For filming of Farmer Wants a Wife, there are approximately 100 crew who arrive in town.
“We stay wherever we can find a place to stay,” she said. “We bring all the cast members together who’ve been kind of isolated on the farm, and then have a bit of a shindig. It’s a lot of fun and the communities always welcome us with open arms.”
And speaking of the crew, majority of them come back year-after-year.
“They all want to be part of the show, so they all come back,” she revealed. “It’s the same camera, same audio, same lighting guys and same editors who want to come back year after year because they make magic.
“When you see the sparks from the chemistry between two people looking at each other, who doesn’t want to be part of that?”
Farmer Wants a Wife premieres on Monday, April 10 at 7.00 pm on 7 and 7Plus.