She won bachelor Art Green’s heart on the reality TV dating show The Bachelor and tonight gorgeous it girl Matilda Rice returns to our screens as c0-host of TV2s new Heartbreak Island. This new highly anticipated local reality show sees a group of sexy singles take up residence on a tropical Fijian island in the hope of finding love and winning a whopping $100K.
To get the inside running before the show kicks off tonight (TV2 at 7.30pm) I caught up with Matilda get the scoop on what we can expect to see.
5 MINS WITH HEARTBREAK ISLAND’S MATLIDA RICE
How long were you away on the Island? Around six weeks
What was the hardest part about being away from home? Missing Art and of course Brian and Christine (my cats)
What was the highlight of co-hosting the show? Seeing the genuine relationships form, but then on the other hand, seeing the huge amount of drama! It was even more dramatic that I expected!
Did anything happen on the show that you found shocking? Absolutely. There will be spanners that people don’t see coming!
How did it feel co-hosting a reality match-making show when you starred on one yourself? It was a totally different experience! I had no idea what to expect, but it was really fun seeing the behind the scenes planning and hard work that went on. I remember being very naïve on The Bachelor.
Do you think any of the singles on Heartbreak Island will end up finding their perfect match like you did? I hope so! I love a happy ending!
Did you have to mentor/coach any of the contestants through their experience on the show? Not really. I tried not to get too close to them as they were kept in the dark about what was coming to keep that element of surprise and I was terrified I’d let something slip!
Above: Heartbreak Island hosts Mark Dye and Matilda Rice.
Do you think it helped that you could relate to what the contestants were going through? Absolutely. I could relate to how they were feeling in so many ways and I think that helped my hosting role by being able to see things from their point of view
What’s the biggest difference between The Bachelor and Heartbreak Island? Heartbreak Island is a bit raunchier and the challenges are hilarious and very different to what you would see on The Bachelor.
What do you think Kiwis will love most about Heartbreak Island? They will love getting to know the contestants. They are all characters, and it was so cool to see them all become so close.
What was the best thing about starring on The Bachelor (besides meeting Art)? Getting to know the girls. It was like a really glamorous school camp. We just hung out and laughed with each other all day
How has being on a reality TV show changed your life? Oh man, how hasn’t it? Apart from the amazing opportunities that have presented themselves since The Bachelor (um hello Heartbreak Island) it’s actually really helped boost my self-confidence. I’ve learnt to be unapologetically myself and to follow my dreams. I know it sounds a bit naf but it’s given me the confidence to go after everything I have ever wanted to do
How do you feel about being “public property” (so to speak) and recognised in the streets etc? It definitely took a bit of getting used to, but people are so nice to us that I could never complain about it. I used to find it weird that random people knew what we were up to, but now I love it! I have conversations with people on Instagram about what good book I’ve read lately or a new shop they’ve found that they think I would like haha – it’s so bizarre and I love it. It’s like I have this new community of friends I don’t know personally.
Above: The Kiwi cast of Heartbreak Island.
What’s the craziest thing that has happened to you by a fan? It didn’t happen to me, it happened to Art but a lady ran up to his car in the middle of an intersection and made him stop and hold up traffic to get a selfie with her (while he was still in the car).
Do you ever get any hate/negativity on social media? Yes I do, and it actually really gets to me! I wish I could just brush it off, but I find that really difficult. I don’t get it too badly just the odd comment that is trying to be nasty.
What’s your secret to staying trim and healthy? Exercise that I actually enjoy and eating lots of whole foods while still keeping good fats high. Oh and doing things that make me happy.
What sort of exercise do you do? Pilates and yoga with a little bit of running.
Best gig you’ve done since you shot to fame on The Bachelor? Hosting Heartbreak Island, without a doubt! A close second would be walking the runway for Jockey. That was liberating and awesome!
What’s next for you? Art and I are working hard on our new business Plate Up, a healthy ready-made meals delivery service. Apart from that, we want to travel as much as we can before we settle in to married life and start popping out some Green-Rices.
Can you share one thing about yourself that no-one already knows about you? I hated fruit and vegetables til I was about 21. I’m not even exaggerating.
Have you and Art set a date for your wedding, are there any details you can share?Yes we have, but we’re keeping it top secret. It’s next year (narrows it down doesn’t it?).
Heartbreak Island starts Monday 11 June, 7.30pm, TVNZ 2 – airing Mon-Weds.
Don’t miss Heartbreak Island Uncut, Fridays 9.30pm on 2 and Sundays 8.30pm on DUKE.