Only two days after ABC announced the season 16 cast of The Bachelorette, Clare Crawley‘s season was set to begin filming. Instead, ABC and Warner Bros. TV announced that the show, along with every other TV show in production, would be put on pause due to the coronavirus pandemic.
So, what next? Will the show recast the men since Crawley, 39, now has had the chance to get to know each one via social media? Plus, will the men still be available to film when the season picks up?
Those are the questions being asked during meetings at ABC — but one thing is for sure: The hairdresser’s season will still air, no matter when that is.
“She’s always been resilient,” ABC’s SVP of Alternative Series, Rob Mills, recently revealed to Deadline. “We’re going to do her a season and it’s going to be fantastic. If she finds a person, then this all means it was all meant to be. We’ll be nimble.”
As for the cast, a decision has not yet been made. Matt James, who was announced as part of the cast in March, is still anxious to meet the hairstylist.
“I’ve been very patient up to this point, and there is a young woman who’s in Sacramento right now that I’m looking forward to meeting once all this stuff settles down,” the 28-year-old told Us Weekly exclusively on Tuesday, April 21. “So I’m hoping that I can be patient a little bit longer and ride this thing out and everyone’s safe and then we can get back to our daily lives and moving forward.”
Crawley, meanwhile, has encouraged her social media followers to continue to applying to be on her season.
“I feel like since we have a break in the show right now, I don’t think it’s too late to submit people,” she said via an Instagram Q&A on March 17. “So, submit them, why not? What’s the worst that could happen?”
Chris Harrison understood her ask, noting that it’s a possibility that the original cast of men may not be able to film whenever the show resumes.
“We don’t have a set time of when we’re gonna come back,” the host, 48, revealed via Instagram Live last month. “The idea that everybody is going to be able to take off work and do this again [is] probably very slim.”
In the meantime, a source confirmed to Us Weekly that producers are “scoping out multiple different resorts to see if it’s possible to film the entire season in one location.”
Although no resort has been chosen, “if one is found, the show has discussed filming the season without the usual travel.” Nothing is yet set in stone, but the show is hopeful for a fall premiere.
“The best thing about The Bachelor is its willingness to evolve as a format so if we need to shoot a cycle that reflects these times, that’s what we’re going to look at doing,” Mills told Deadline, also revealing that ABC has internally discussed a new series, Bachelor In Quarantine.
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