'We've really learned from our mistakes, but there really weren't any major mistakes made,' he says
With Bachelor in Paradise set to premiere on Aug. 14, just one week later than originally scheduled, host Chris Harrison is promising that the recent scandal involving Corinne Olympios and DeMario Jackson will be addressed head-on.
“All will be explained, and I really do mean that,” he told Entertainment Tonight at the recent taping of The Bachelorette: Men Tell All episode, where Jackson also appeared. “I need people to understand this was not a black-and-white, cut-and-dry issue. It’s really — there’s a lot of layers to it. It was very confusing.”
In June, news broke that filming in Mexico on BiP had halted after a sexual encounter between Olympios and Jackson that involved alcohol. The show launched an investigation, as did Olympios’ lawyer, and both determined there was no wrongdoing. The two contestants didn’t return to Mexico when the show resumed filming, but they have both agreed to appear on a reunion special, where Harrison will interview them together.
While the footage of the encounter won’t be shown, Harrison told The Hollywood Reporter, “When this plays out and you see it all happening, you’ll understand what I’m saying.”
Harrison also addressed some of the changes to the show that happened in the wake of the scandal and assured fans that they won’t see much of a difference.
“I think publicly everyone is going to want us to come out and say, ‘We’ve changed everything!’ and that it will be earth-shattering,” he told THR. “We’ve really learned from our mistakes, but there really weren’t any major mistakes made.”
“Yes, we’ve made some changes, but if you talk to the cast, they’ve always been the most important thing to us — taking care of them and their safety,” Harrison continued. “And as far as alcohol goes, that’s never been a big thing for us. That’s a big misconception of the show — that we push it, and that we need it and we want it. But that really doesn’t help us. Someone being sloppy drunk and being out of it does not give us good television… On the contrary, we want people to be of their right mind and give us a better story to show. So while we’re going to talk about rules and talk about certain things and have a dialogue, you’re not going to notice major changes.”
Bachelor in Paradise premieres Aug. 14 on ABC.