Chris Harrison will not host The Bachelorette
Chris Harrison's "temporary" hiatus from Bachelor Nation is not yet over. The host, who stepped away from the show in the wake of a controversy over racism in the franchise, will not be appearing in the upcoming season of The Bachelorette. ABC and Warner Horizon announced in a joint statement on Friday that former Bachelorettes Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe will host in Harrison's absence. Read the full statement here:
This is the first public statement from ABC and Warner Horizon regarding Harrison since his controversial Feb. 9 interview with EXTRA correspondent (and former Bachelorette) Rachel Lindsay. When asked about photos of Bachelor contestant Rachael Kirkconnell at an antebellum-themed sorority party in 2018, Harrison downplayed the racist undertones of the event. "My guess? These girls got dressed up and went to a party and had a great time and they were 18 years old," he said. The next day, the host apologized for "wrongly speaking in a manner that perpetuates racism," and later issued a second apology with the announcement that he would be "stepping aside" to educate himself "on a more profound and productive level than ever before." (Kirkconnell also apologized for her "racist and offensive" behavior.)
Season 17 of The Bachelorette is reportedly starting production this month in New Mexico. While it's unclear whether Harrison will return to the franchise for the next show in the cycle — possibly Bachelor in Paradise this summer — the host told GMA's Michael Strahan on March 4 that he intends to stay with the franchise. "I plan to be back and I want to be back," Harrison said. "This interview is not the finish line. There is much more work to be done, and I'm excited to be a part of that change."
Harrison will appear on Monday's season finale of The Bachelor, which was shot months ago. The After the Final Rose special, however, was hosted by Emmanuel Acho, author of Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man.