Start Your Engines (And Cast Speculation): RuPaul Has Landed To Film ‘Drag Race Australia’
After a year of silence, it's actually happening.
Drag Race Australia is about to begin filming its first season, and reports have it that the fracking legend herself is currently in hotel quarantine in Auckland, having flown from the US to take part in the show.
NZ’s Express Magazine is reporting that RuPaul is in hotel quarantine to film the 10-episode season, which was moved to New Zealand after Sydney’s recent COVID-19 clusters saw the production make a last-minute switch to film the Australian edition in Auckland. (Yes, it’s slightly confusing.)
And with the move, Express also report that a few New Zealand queens have been cast, too. This means Drag Race Australia is, technically, more of a ‘RuPaul’s Antipodean Drag Race’, but what’s more Australian than claiming a New Zealand creation as our own?
Ru’s involvement also comes as a surprise.
While Ru has featured in the UK edition of the show — of which the upcoming Season 2 was filmed during the pandemic — it seemed unlikely she’d host the Australian edition, which when announced in 2019 did not have a host attached. Additionally, last year, both the Netherlands and Canada launched Drag Race franchises, which didn’t feature Ru as a host.
Prior to Express’ report, it’s been widely rumoured that Drag Race alumn Courtney Act would host a local edition, given she’s one of Australia’s most successful queens. While she is currently in hotel quarantine in Sydney, the timing doesn’t match up with the alleged late January commencement date, given she’d have to then quarantine again in New Zealand. Additionally, Act was starring a London play until late January before Tier 4 restrictions saw the production shut down.
Perhaps Ru herself wanted to be involved in the Australian edition given her well-known love for Australian culture, idioms accents — additionally, she, has holidayed in Australia many times with her husband, who is from Perth.
Drag Race Australia is produced by ITV (Love Island Australia, The Voice Australia, I’m A Celeb…), though it’s currently unconfirmed where it will broadcast. Given the streaming service’s affiliation with the series, it’s speculated that Stan are involved. Junkee has reached out for comment and will share any updates we receive.
RuPaul’s Drag Race S13 is currently airing on Stan, with new episodes arriving 3pm AEDT each Saturday. The second season of Drag Race UK premiers on January 15.