Longtime Bachelor franchise host, Chris Harrison, will remain on the sidelines, according to sources who report that he will not host the upcoming Bachelor in Paradise series.
Harrison came under fire for racially insensitive comments her made during an interview with former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay.
The role will be filed by celebrity comedians — including David Spade — who will serve as guest hosts, sources told Variety. As of Wednesday, offers to celebrity talent were still being considered and Spade’s deal was the only one to have closed.
Unlike the upcoming season of The Bachelorette, which premieres next week, Bachelor in Paradise will not be hosted by Bachelor Nation alums.
What’s more, according to two separate Variety sources it’s “highly unlikely” Harrison will serve as host for Michelle Young’s season of The Bachelorette, which is set to air this fall, after Bachelor in Paradise. The next opportunity for Harrison to return will be The Bachelor which kicks off in January 2022.
According to Variety sources, no decision has been made at this time regarding whether Harrison will remain the franchise’s permanent host going forward. Sources say that viewer reaction for the upcoming season of The Bachelorette could help determine his fate.
Individuals close to Harrison tell Variety that the veteran host cares deeply about the franchise and its viewers, and has no plans to walk away on his own accord.
Back in February, Harrison sparred with Lindsay after photos of Bachelorette Rachael Kirkconnell surfaced of her attending an antebellum-themed fraternity party in 2018 while a college student. He defended Kirkconnel, bemoaning “woke” people, and not really understanding why Kirkconnell’s actions were problematic.
After huge blowback, Harrison announced he would step aside from the franchise temporarily. Former fan-favorite Bachelorette stars Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe will co-host the Katie Thurston Bachelorette season beginning June 7.
In the meantime, the first ever Black bachelor, Matt James, had chosen Kirkconnell at the end of The Bachelor season, and the two were together until the photos surfaced. During the After the Rose special, hosted by Emmanuel Acho, the former couple looked mighty uncomfortable as they announced they were no longer together. However, since then, the two have reconciled.