Chris Harrison Won’t Appear on ABC’s Bachelor in Paradise in the Aftermath of Race-Related Controversy
Chris Harrison will not appear on ABC’s Bachelor in Paradise in the wake of race-related controversy… as David Spade will be one of the rotating hosts for the summer show
- Decision comes about four months after controversial Extra interview
- In it, he called for “a little understanding” for a participant who had attended a plantation-themed party in 2018.
- Harrison later said he “stepped aside” for a ‘period of time’
- Spade’s interest in The Bachelor played a role in his selection
Chris Harrison will not host a Bachelor in Paradise this summer, about four months after a race-related controversy in which he suggested “a little understanding” towards a contestant who attended a plantation-themed party in 2018.
In the wake of the controversy, the 49-year-old Dallas resident said he “stepped aside for a while” and the final season of The Bachelorette kicked off with an uncertain future ahead in the ABC reality romance universe.
While Bachelor Nation alums Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe presented The Bachelorette in Harrison’s first absence, producers use a rotating cast of hosts for Bachelor in Paradise, including David Spade.
Latest: Chris Harrison, 49, will not host a Bachelor in Paradise this summer, about four months after a race-related controversy, as producers use a rotating cast of hosts for the show, including David Spade, 56
A source told Page six that Spade’s interest in The Bachelor – he has talked about it on his social media accounts and in a Jimmy Kimmel appearance – was a factor in his selection.
“The producers want to bring some fun to the show,” the source says. “They think it’s gotten too serious.”
Harrison came under scrutiny in February after performing on Additional in which he downplayed contestant Rachael Kirkconnell’s past actions after images of her surfaced during a 2018 antebellum themed bash.
Harrison said that “we all need a little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion” towards Kirkconnell amid the turbulent times of the “awake police” and cancellation culture.
In the wake of the controversy, the 49-year-old Dallas native said he “stepped aside” for an “era” and kicked off the final season of The Bachelorette with an uncertain future ahead in the ABC reality romance universe.
Background: Spade’s interest in The Bachelor – he has talked about it on his social media accounts and in a Jimmy Kimmel appearance – was a factor in his selection
“I’ve seen some things online — this judge, jury, executioner thing — where people are just tearing up this girl’s life and diving into, like, her parents, her parents’ voting habits,” Harrison said. “It’s incredibly alarming to see this.
“I haven’t heard Rachael talk about this yet. And until I actually hear this woman speak a chance, who am I to say this?’
Harrison, the longtime host of all three Bachelor Nation shows – The Bachelor, The Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise – later took to Instagram to clarify his comments on the controversial topic.
“While I don’t speak for Rachael Kirkconnell, my intention was simply to ask for mercy by offering her a chance to speak on her behalf,” he said. “What I now realize I’ve done is cause harm by speaking wrongly in a way that perpetuates racism, and I’m so sorry for that.”