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STD tests, critique a stranger: The Bachelor’s casting process

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Excitement is building over season five of The Bachelor with Matty Johnson landing the starring role after he was left heartbroken by Georgia Love last year, but how are his potential suitors chosen?

To become one of 22 women battling it out on national television for the affection of a man you have never met before, there are a few hoops producers will have you jump through first.

During a casting call for last season’s show with Richie Strahan, bachelorettes on their quest for true love took part in certain games, such as standing in a circle and critiquing each other; debating contentious topics, such as religion; and battling it out for a rose left in the centre of a room.

Those who made it through to the reality show then have to undertake a mandatory medical test, including one for sexually transmitted diseases. A spokesperson for the producers, Warner Bros, described the checks to Fairfax Media as a “duty of care”.

Last year’s “villain” Keira Maguire, 30, who was such a hit for Network Ten that she was asked back to star on this year’s I’m a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here, also told Fairfax Media about the “shoe game”.

“We all had to take our shoes off and you had to guess whose shoes belonged to who and you had to describe their personality when you picked up the shoes,” Maguire explained.

She denied that it sounded a bit Mean Girls, explaining: “At the end of the day it is up to you what you do and say.”

However, Maguire was “mortified” about some parts of the casting process, particularly the chase for the single red rose.

STD tests, critique a stranger: The Bachelor's casting process
Last year’s The Bachelor Richie Strahan with contestants, including Keira Maguire (in the front, second from left). 

“I stood back and was like, ‘what the hell? This is absolutely ridiculous.’ I literally wasn’t participating,” she laughed.

It was that non-compliance that she says landed her a spot in the final line-up.

STD tests, critique a stranger: The Bachelor's casting process
Keira Maguire with Strahan on The Bachelor. 

“I just stood there with a look across my face as the other women ran to the rose … The producers have positions marked out and they thought, ‘We got our villain,'” Maguire laughed.

But she was surprised by some who were turned away.

STD tests, critique a stranger: The Bachelor's casting process
Matty Johnson is Australia’s next Bachelor.  

“You are looking at all of these beautiful girls coming through and you think, ‘they will have to make it,’ and they don’t get through. It’s more about personality and what you will be like on TV,” she said.

Thousands of applications are submitted each year and its the producers’ job to ensure they have the right mixture of romance as well as entertainment Warner Bros explained the techniques used helped highlight someone’s character.

“Casting for The Bachelor Australia aims to see how people express themselves and if they have the ability to describe how they feel, something that is instrumental to finding love with the Bachelor,” a spokesperson added to Fairfax Media.

“Auditions are voluntary and participants are encouraged to speak up if they are interested in the reasoning behind an activity.”

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