Byron Bay locals furious as celebs take over the coastal town

Marni Dixit
·Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
·3-min read

It all started with reports Zac Efron had relocated to Byron Bay mid-last year to escape the coronavirus pandemic in the US and now it seems like half of Hollywood has followed the Hemsworth brothers to the coastal town, and reports are emerging that locals aren't impressed.

Celebrities, influencers, honeymooners and schoolies trips have taken over Byron Bay in the last few months, meaning locals are facing increased traffic and delays.

Byron Bay locals have been left angry at all the celebrities who have taken over their town. Photo: Getty
Byron Bay locals have been left angry at all the celebrities who have taken over their town. Photo: Getty

Nicole Kidman and Melissa McCarthy have been living in the area for a few months while they shoot Nine Perfect Strangers and it seems like production has caused quite the headache for the people of Byron Bay.

Locals have been keeping gossip account Deuxmoi updated with their grievances.

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The account shared some anonymous messages from angry residents who are upset by the fact their quiet town has been taken over by celebrities.

"Everyone knows Byron Bay is one of the most beautiful places in Australia, but since Covid hit, it seems to be the new celebrity hotspot," one irritated resident wrote. "It's a small town, but the traffic is so bad due to roadworks AND the filming of Nicole Kidman and Melissa McCarthy's new series (Nine Perfect Strangers) shutting off an alternative route to get into town!

One angry resident send Deuxmoi a message about what it's like living in Byron Bay nowadays. Photo: Instagram/Deuxmoi
One angry resident send Deuxmoi a message about what it's like living in Byron Bay nowadays. Photo: Instagram/Deuxmoi

"Productions over the area have also taken over A LOT of rentals. People are mad about the celebrity take over!"

They weren't the only ones who was annoyed, with another writing in: "I've lived in this area my whole life it’s completely changed because of the celebrities!

"The wannabe influencers in Sydney and Melbourne all sold their homes to move here – Natalie Portman is here too and they're trying to build a huge filming studio for them – Melissa McCarthy, Chris Hemsworth etc but we don't have the infrastructure to support all the people movie!

"Everyone I know can no longer afford to live here and won't be able to buy houses in the areas they've grown up in and you can't get your kids into any schools!

Another said people who have lived there their whole lives are unable to buy property there or send their kids to school because it's become so busy there. Photo: Instagram/Deuxmoi
Another said people who have lived there their whole lives are unable to buy property there or send their kids to school because it's become so busy there. Photo: Instagram/Deuxmoi

"Zac Efron, Jacob Elordi etc all buy houses here because they love the vibes but the vibes are gone," they finished with a sad face.

Nicole Kidman spoke about the decision to film Nine Perfect Strangers in Australia, saying she was "thrilled" by the decision.

"It is a great opportunity for me to give back to the community that nurtured me through so much of my career," she told The Sunday Telegraph.

The NSW and Federal Governments gave the production a green light to bring in the international and interstate cast and crew.

Nicole shared this photo of herself and Melissa McCarthy after they finished filming Nine Perfect Strangers in Byron Bay. Photo: Instagram/NicoleKidman
Nicole shared this photo of herself and Melissa McCarthy after they finished filming Nine Perfect Strangers in Byron Bay. Photo: Instagram/NicoleKidman

Despite the residents’ annoyance, the production brought hundreds of jobs to NSW and helped the crippled film and TV industry in Australia.

In August, when filming kicked off, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said in a statement: "Australia is in the box seat to attract productions to our shores and we are privileged that one of the first is Nine Perfect Strangers with our Nicole Kidman.

"Not only is Ms Kidman an acclaimed, Oscar-winning actor and producer, but she is an outstanding ambassador for our nation."

The series is based on a book written by Liane Moriarty, who also wrote the Big Little Lies book which was adapted to a series that Nicole also starred in.

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