Chris Harrison to Be Replaced by Guest Hosts on ‘Bachelor in Paradise’
According to Variety, comedian Spade is the only guest to have officially signed on at the moment while offers to other celebrity talent are still being considered. ABC and Warner Bros. TV have declined to comment on Harrison’s future with the franchise or Spade’s involvement with Bachelor in Paradise.
The news comes after controversy surrounding racially insensitive comments Harrison made earlier this year. The long-serving Bachelor host had defended contestant Rachael Kirkconnell after photos came to light showing her attending an antebellum plantation-themed in her college days. Harrison said that people should have “a little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion,” arguing that the “lens” of 2021 compared to 2018 has changed dramatically.
Following the backlash to these comments, Harrison apologized and announced that he would be stepping aside from the Bachelor franchise for an undetermined amount of time, starting with the After the Final Rose special. Former Bachelorette favorites Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe were subsequently announced as Harrison’s replacements for the 17th season of The Bachelorette.
At the time, Harrison explained, “I am dedicated to getting educated on a more profound and productive level than ever before.” ABC Entertainment and Warner Horizon also issued a joint statement, saying, “We support Chris in the work that he is committed to doing.” However, there is currently no word on when Harrison will return to the franchise, even though he is determined to resume his hosting duties.
“I plan to be back and I want to be back,” he said during an interview with Michael Strahan on Good Morning America in March. He also stated that he has been working with a race educator, faith leaders and scholars to better himself ahead of a potential return.
Production on Bachelor in Paradise is expected to begin as early as next week, with the season set to premiere on August 16.