17 juicy behind the scenes facts and production secrets about how The Traitors is made

Before every banishment the cast are made to listen to The Hanging Tree from The Hunger Games soundtrack

The Traitors has absolutely everyone and their dog in a chokehold, and the viewing figures reflect that with episode four of season two seeing a whopping 3.8 million viewers tune in. It’s eerie, suspenseful and highly camp – but making a show like this doesn’t come easy. There are a lot of behind the scenes production secrets that make The Traitors what it is.

From making sure that all the cast stay in the dark about who the traitors are by blind folding them, yes really, to putting up fake walls within the castle, a lot is going on behind the cameras. So, here are all the juiciest behind the scenes facts and production secrets about making BBC’s The Traitors:

As well as the prize fund, the contestants are paid to partake

Aaron Evans, who won the first season and gave most of his winnings to his mother so she could buy a house, revealed that along with the prospect of an up to £120,000 prize fund, the cast are compensated for their time on the show. In a YouTube Q&A, he said: “They don’t technically pay you, they subsidise what you would have got for work with the show, it’s roughly like £100 a day. It’s not that much […] but its definitely worth it.”

via BBC

All the traitors are actually chosen by Claudia herself

Aaron also confirmed that it is actually Claudia who picks the traitors herself as we see on screen and that the producers did not interfere.

“It ends up being Claudia, when you initially go into her room in episode one. She kind of has an idea of who she’s going to pick, but you can influence her quite a lot,” he said.

The producers don’t control the narrative at all

With any reality show, it’s natural to assume that producers are influencing story lines behind the scenes, giving the cast scripts or manipulating the edits. However, Aaron insists this is not the case with the BBC game show and that the producers never once get involved. Aaron said: “We were never pushed into the drama, it just happens, the producers would never control anything, we had complete control over what we said and what we did.”

The breakfast food is actually ‘dry and not very nice’

The Traitors production secrets

via BBC

Every morning, the breakfast scenes is where the contestants gather to start the day and see who survived the night. On the tables are cups of coffee, juice and delicious towers of pastries, but Ivan from season one revealed on Twitter that all isn’t as it seems on screen: “I’m sorry guys, it’s time to come clean and leak something shocking about #TheTraitors. It pains me to tell you, but that breakfast is REALLY DRY AND NOT VERY NICE.”

The contestants don’t actually sleep in the castle

Now this one might come as a big surprise but the contestants don’t actually sleep in the castle and instead they leave every night and sleep at a hotel at Inverness Airport which is roughly a 45-minute drive from Ardross Castle where the show is filmed. What an anti-climax.

They’re only allowed into certain rooms of the castle

The cast aren’t allowed throughout the entire castle and instead only have access to the library, the small bar, the library, the billiards room and, when banishments are taking place, the round table room. Claire from season one said in an online forum: “The rest of the castle, weirdly, is just full of gaffer tape and wires, production staff, filming crew and sound crew all running around. You are not allowed there unless you’re being taken somewhere.”

The upstair rooms in the castle are used as green rooms

The cast also do not have access to the upstairs rooms of the castle as they are used as “green rooms”. The diary room footage of the contestants is so integral to the show as it’s where we, as the viewer, learn the contestant’s true feelings and suspicions, and it is in these upstairs green rooms that is filmed.

“The upstairs bedrooms are classed as green rooms. These are the rooms that you are held in for hours and hours before being called to breakfast or to the diary room to be murdered,” Claire said.

There are five different diary rooms

The Traitors production secrets

via BBC

Whilst they look completely identical on screen, so much so that you would never guess there was more than one diary room, but according to a first season faithful, there are actually four or five diary rooms that are used for filming.

Fake walls were installed in the some of the rooms that were used for filming

If you’ve ever gone onto to the Andross Castle website and looked at photos of the interior only to not recognise any of it from the show that’s because for some rooms, like the medieval looking one where the round table is filmed, fake walls are installed so that crew members can stand behind them and not be on camera.

The cast are allowed supervised smoke breaks

For any of the cast that may smoke or vape, who in the first season was Claire, Hannah, Kieran and Matt, they are allowed to have supervised smoking breaks but under no circumstances are they left alone.

The round table room is freezing

One of the production secrets Claire from season one of The Traitors shared was that the room where they have their round table every night is freezing as the producers have the Air Con on “full blast” which apparently makes the room even more “panic driving”.

The Traitors production secrets

via BBC

They’re made to listen to a song before they start the banishment

This is genuinely one of the best production secrets I’ve heard of from any show and it’s that the entire cast of The Traitors is made to listen to a song, in its entirety, before the start of the round table every night. “What song is it?,” you ask. The Hanging Tree from The Hunger Games soundtrack, of course. What else? The theatrics of this. I’m obsessed!

The contestants are never left alone

None of the contestants are ever left alone to prevent from them having chats about the game whilst the cameras aren’t rolling.

The cast are blindfolded and taken back to the hotel individually

When the day is over, each cast member is taken back to the hotel by Inverness Airport individually and even blindfolded. The reason for the blindfold, according to Claire, was to prevent them seeing anyone else pulling up to the hotel and playing guessing games about who the traitors are.

They’re told the night before what to wear

The Traitors production secrets

via BBC

Due to the range of actives that the cast take part in, including swimming, whilst the exact nature of the task is kept a secret, the contestants are told the night before what sort of clothes they need to wear for the following day’s activities.

Each day has a different call back time

Every day has a different call back time and it can be as early as 6am but even so, the breakfast scene can sometimes not end up being filmed until actually more around lunchtime, a season one contestant revealed.

Some of the cast are scouted

Whilst anyone is able to apply for The Traitors through an online process, the producers do also scout some of the cast members, Tim Harcourt, one of the producers for the show, told The Times what sort of person he wants to take part: “No wannabes … someone who is so craven for fame that they will do or say anything because if they are so willing or so biddable, you lose any sense of authenticity.” In order to find people who fit this criteria, producers scouted people from poker clubs and chess societies, as well as finding people who love playing strategy games.

The first three episodes of The Traitors UK season two are available on BBC iPlayer now. For more like this round up of production secrets about making The Traitors and the best music, reality TV and entertainment news, like Pop Culture Shrine on Facebook

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Featured images via BBC.