While TLC’s 90 Day Fiancé has had its share of major crashes and burns in the eight seasons it’s aired so far, the successful franchise’s producers say its divorce rate is better than the national average.
“Sadly, the divorce rate in the United States hovers around 50% — 50% of couples do not make it. We’re well above that,” explained Matt Sharp, CEO of Sharp Entertainment, via Deadline. “Our couples are well above 75%.”
90 Day Fiancé documents couples made up of Americans who fall in love with international partners. While most potential pairings meet online, the series follows engaged couples as they complete the K-1 visa requirement of getting married within 90 days of the foreigner’s arrival in the United States — if they do not, the foreigner must return to their home country.
From culture shock to using translators to communicate, the flagship series has kept TLC fans hooked as the original has sparked many spinoffs like 90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days and 90 Day Fiancé: The Other Way. “There are a lot of people who sometimes watch the show and say, ‘Oh my gosh, it’s so hard,’” Sharp continued. “And, you know, ‘They’re going way out of the box here and they’re not gonna understand each other.’ That’s one of the really amazing things about this show.”
Sharp’s senior director of casting, Brooklyn Bagwell, also gave his take on why the couples are so successful compared to other reality TV programs. “Honestly I think the couples on 90 Day are more likely to stay together. They’ve already gone through so much. Why break up now? They’ve done so much to get to be together.”
He added, “This show is incredibly diverse. There are people that come from all different backgrounds who are finding these connections … who get in these incredible love journeys. And so, yes, I was very happy to see the great majority of our couples are staying together.”
Viewers have become invested in the journeys of thriving 90 Day Fiancé couples so much that alums have even gotten their own shows. Chantel Everett and Pedro Jimeno were first introduced on season 4 back in 2016. After appearing on seasons 2, 3, and 4 of 90 Day Fiancé: Happily Ever After?, they were given their own spinoff, The Family Chantel.
While the show has seen its success, it wouldn’t be insanely popular without a few messy splits. In eight seasons, the show has seen the divorces of 10 couples. Season 2’s Danielle Jbali (née Mullins) and Mohamed Jbali divorced in 2017, season 2’s Chelsea Macek and Yamir Castillo divorced in 2016, season 2’s Jason Hitch and Cassia Tavares divorced in 2018, season 4’s Anfisa Arkhipchenko and Jorge Nava divorced in 2020, season 5’s Molly Hopkins and Luis Mendez divorced in 2018, season 6’s Ashley Martson and Jay Smith divorced in 2020, season 6’s Colt Johnson and Larissa Dos Santos Lima divorced in 2019, season 6’s Jonathan Rivera and Fernanda Flores divorced in 2020, season 1’s The Other Way alums Laura and Aladin Jallali divorced in 2020 and season 4 Before the 90 Days stars Lisa Hamme and Usman “Sojaboy” Umar divorced in 2020.
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