Who Will Replace Laura Whitmore As Host Of Love Island? Here Are Our 12 Top Picks

Between Maya Jama, AJ Odudu, Darren Harriott and more, there are plenty of potential candidates for the most coveted job in telly.
AJ Odudu, Maya Jama and Darren Harriott on the set of Love Island Aftersun
AJ Odudu, Maya Jama and Darren Harriott on the set of Love Island Aftersun
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Speculation is already mounting over who will take over one of the most coveted gigs in telly, following the news Laura Whitmore will not be returning to Love Island.

Announcing her departure after three series, the Irish presenter said: ““There are certain elements of the show I’ve found very difficult that cannot be changed, some due to the format, including the flying back and forth to South Africa along with my new conflicting projects.

“I wish it was still possible but know you’ll be in safe hands.”

Referring to her predecessor and friend Caroline Flack, Laura added: “I was only planning to fill in for Caroline for a series and it turned into 3 series. I hope I did you proud Caroline.”

With a vacancy now open as Love Island host, here are 12 potential replacements for when the show returns to our screens in 2023…

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Maya’s name has been linked with Love Island for years now, and with Laura Whitmore having now officially stepped aside, the stage could well be set for her to take her spot at the helm of the reality show.

Not only would she be a perfect fit (anyone who’s watched her on Glow Up knows she has a knack for talking people through stressful situations, and she would certainly serve up some lewks in the villa), fans seem more than behind the idea, too.

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Another name that’s come into the frame in the past year is AJ Odudu. Like Caroline Flack before her, AJ won herself a legion of new fans when she made it all the way to the final of Strictly Come Dancing thanks to her dancing ability – not to mention her personality.

In the last year, AJ began fronting the cult Channel 4 reality show The Bridge and also co-hosts The Big Breakfast with Mo Gilligan, and her down-to-earth presenting style would be perfect for both interviewing the Islanders and guiding them through some of those bombshell twists.

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Not only is Maura one of the most iconic Islanders to ever grace the villa (her countless catchphrase are still synonymous with the show three years later), she’s also been cutting her teeth as a presenter in recent years.

As well as segments on daytime TV, Maura is the host of Glow Up in her native Ireland, and we have to say we’re really impressed with her skills as a presenter, no doubt helped by having made a start on reality TV herself.

Maura’s name was first mentioned in conjunction with hosting Love Island last year, when ITV was forced to deny they were planning to replace Laura Whitmore.

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But of course, there’s another former contestant fans are keen to see upgraded to Love Island host.

Fresh from her win just a few weeks ago, many viewers are keen to see the reigning queen of the villa take on presenting duties now that the opportunity has arisen. She and Davide recently landed their own reality show, meaning she’ll be back on our screens in no time (and therefore not leaving our consciousness any time soon), so it’s definitely not beyond the realm of possibility.

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There’s also the possibility that after two back-to-back female hosts, Love Island might want to take Laura’s departure as an opportunity to reinvent the show somewhat, and introduce a male host.

Best known for his work as a comedian, Darren essentially served as Laura’s right-hand man on spin-off show Aftersun this year, appearing in numerous episodes of the companion show, so he’s a familiar face to Love Island viewers at this point.

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Another potential male host would be stand-up comic Mo Gilligan.

Known for appearing on the panel of ITV’s The Masked Singer, and hosting the Brit Awards earlier this year, Mo was initially named as a potential host for the upcoming reboot of Big Brother. With Alison Hammond now heavily rumoured to have landed this role, perhaps Mo could sidestep to the Love Island villa rather than the Big Brother house.

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Interestingly, Emily Atack has been named as the early bookies’ favourite to succeed Laura Whitmore as the host of Love Island.

Known for her comedy acting, the former Inbetweeners star competed on I’m A Celebrity in 2018, and went on to host ITV2 spin-off Extra Camp the following year. More recently, she’s appeared as a panellist on This Is My House and fronts her own show based around her stand-up, The Emily Atack Show, on the station.

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We definitely wouldn’t count Clara out either, though. A self-professed Love Island superfan, the Radio 1 star was a hit with ITV2 viewers when she made an appearance on companion show Aftersun, and we’re sure would be just as popular as host.

Like AJ, Clara also made an appearance on Strictly in the last couple of years, and recently made her debut hosting the streetwear competition show The Drop. She’s also set to begin fronting the new astrology-themed dating show Written In The Stars.

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Another star who’s already firmly under the Love Island umbrella is Arielle Free, the co-host of the show’s official podcast The Morning After.

Like Maya and Maura, the Scottish star was named by The Sun as a potential new host for Love Island last year, although Laura Whitmore ultimately ended up staying for another series.

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Stacey’s another former Strictly finalist whose presenting career received a boost after lifting the Glitterball trophy.

Having previously presented two seasons of Glow Up and the cult fave This Is My House, Stacey’s work as a documentarian means she’s used to discussing all manner of topics with people from different walks of life. Surely Love Island would be a (slow-motion) walk in the park?

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With Netflix having success with Nick and Vanessa Lachey at the helm of Love Is Blind, perhaps ITV might consider introducing a real-life couple as the new hosts of Love Island.

If they did, we could definitely see Rochelle and Marvin fitting in nicely, with the pair proving popular on the BBC game show The Hit List, which they host together.

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As the show’s long-running narrator, Iain has become known as the “voice of Love Island”, and his popularity among viewers has never waned. Given he’s been with the show since its inception, we can’t think of anyone more qualified to take over presenting duties than Laura’s husband.

That being said, whether or not he’d want the gig remains to be seen…

Love Island returns to our screens in early 2023 for a new winter series, with a second run in its usual summer slot airing later in the year.


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