The Traitors NZ: 19 contestants revealed for Paul Henry's 'devilish little game'

A conspiracy theorist investigator, a Three weatherman, a former police woman, crime-writer and one of New Zealand's top musicians are just some of the 19 contestants who have today been unveiled as competitors on Warner Bros. Discovery ANZ's latest reality show, The Traitors NZ.

They will fight for a chance to win up to $70,000 on the show, which will premiere on Three and ThreeNow on Monday, August 7.

The series mixes up the murder-mystery format and encourages competitors to lie and cheat during a series of challenges as they try to uncover the traitors in their midst all while competing in challenges and building up prize money.

The contestants are a mix of local celebrities and members of the public who have all been dumped in a hideaway in a secret location and left to stir the pot for host Paul Henry's pleasure.

The game actively encourages lying, but broadcaster Brodie Kane isn't sure she's any "good" at that.

"We all tell little white  lies - but how far will we have to go beyond  that? And if I'm good, what does that say about me!"

It's not a role the so-called "nicest guy in broadcasting", Mike Puru, relishes, saying: "It's a great test of character when you're not in control."

Radio Hauraki's Matt Heath is looking forward to pulling the strings, telling Newshub he has "the potential to be really loud and annoying," though he's worried that could mean he "puts a target on my back."

Brooke Howard-Smith's not a fan of the manipulative side of the show, saying: "The game puts you in some pretty crazy and sometimes stressful situations where you don't trust the very people you are bonding deeply with."

But that's not a worry for influencer and IT consultant Fili Tapa, who says his charm and charisma could win over others in the game. Maybe he'll need to stay out of the way of Tickled co-director Dylan Reeve, who says he "really wants to avoid becoming the focus of attention or suspicion for my fellow players. I will stoke fires, but I don't want to be starting them."

Dylan Reeve and Justine Smith are part of The Traitors NZ.
Dylan Reeve and Justine Smith are part of The Traitors NZ. Photo credit: Supplied

Psychic Kimberley Stewart reckons most of the contestants will avoid her - once they find out her vocation. She "reckons she can spot a liar at 20 paces."

"Someone who's hiding something will always avoid me once they find out what I do for a job," she told Newshub.

However, some of the contestants are just here for the fun and anarchy.

Comedian and The Project host Justine Smith is one of those looking to show off her more devilish side.

"I want to really indulge that evil Scorpio side of me and there's no one in the cast I wouldn't lie to - old and new. It appeals to me to be slightly evil," she cackles.

The Traitors is based on the Dutch series De Verraders, which premiered in 2021 and has since been adapted for the Australian market.

The concept of the show is based on Mafia, a social deduction game created by Dimitry Davidoff in 1986.

The show has become a global phenomenon, with the UK version of the Netherlands original being streamed more than 34 million times on the BBC iPlayer.

The Traitors NZ starts on Three and ThreeNow on Monday, August 7.

The full list of contestants:

  • Brodie Kane: Broadcaster turned podcast entrepreneur.
  • Mike Puru: Much-loved broadcasting and media personality.
  • Matt Heath: Radio host and media columnist.
  • Christen Oliveira: Entrepreneur and advocate for self-acceptance.
  • Brooke Howard-Smith: Entrepreneur and natural leader.
  • Fili Tapa: Influencer, IT consultant, and fitness enthusiast.
  • Dylan Reeve: Writer and filmmaker.
  • Sam Smith: Comedian and writer.
  • Kimberly Stewart: Often called New Zealand's most accurate psychic.
  • Dan Sing: Professional Poker Player and Talent Manager. 
  • Justine Smith: Comedian.
  • Loryn Reynolds: Professional competitive ballroom dancer.
  • Colin Mathura-Jeffree: Renowned model.
  • Robbie Bell: Senior Hair stylist and former city girl.
  • Julia Varhy: Former Police Officer turned insurance guru. 
  • Anna Reeve: Not your typical 'mummy-blogger' 
  • Sam 'Fury' Johnson: E-Blacks captain and professional gamer.
  • Kings: Rapper, singer and songwriter. 
  • Vanda Symon: Crime novelist and former fencing champion.