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Chris Harrison: On Scandals, DeAnna and black Bachelorettes! TV DivaGal Exclusive!

By   |   December 23, 2010   |   Entertainment

The Bachelor host Chris Harrison has already ‘fessed to TV DivaGal that just because new/old bachelor Brad Womack is in love doesn’t mean there’s a happily ever after. Are the Bachelorettes too young? Do they check out of the Rose ceremonies themselves? Is it because there are no sassy black ladies for Brad to chose from? TV DivaGal could have worked that out. Here’s part II of my exclusive interview with Chris!

Brad’s 38, and most of the women competing for his love are under 30. Why not bring on women closer to his age?

The answer is two-fold. While we were casting, we still hadn’t picked the Bachelor. Brad had been in the mix for about a year, but we weren’t sure we were going to let him do this. He had to jump through a lot hoops and prove he was going to come back and take this seriously. The second reason? I think with this group you’ll realize rather quickly it’s how old you act, not how old you are. We have a lot of single moms, women who are divorced, a woman who lost her fianc├⌐. These women have lived an amazing amount of life experience. It’s a very different season. I don’t think you’ll find any age disparity.

So there won’t be women taking off their underwear or pulling other craziness at the first Rose ceremony?

Here’s a little bit of us pulling back the curtain on our production. We’re constantly casting for future seasons, and we never cast just 25 women. We have 50, 60 or 70 women who we think would make a good Bachelorette. Once we know who the Bachelor is, the casting department takes a good look at that pool and decides who will go on the show. Brad is older, so you can have divorcees and single moms in the mix. But you can only tailor it so much. The great thing about our show is that it is a cross-section: You have sorority girls, girls just starting their careers and the older moms. It’s Brad job to go in there and sort it and figure out what he really wants. And the only way to do that is to give him an entire melting pot.

Jilted Bachelorettes Jenni Croft and DeAnna Pappas both return to confront Brad in the first episode of the show. Do you think DeAnna has lingering feelings for her lost Bachelor?

I think both Jenni and DeAnna came in there and put on their smiley brave faces. They have both moved on so much in their lives; they obviously realized that Brad was not the one. That last Rose ceremony for Jenni and DeAnna, and I think for DeAnna just a little bit more, was a very hurtful, painful and public moment. Yes it led to other great things in her life like becoming the Bachelorette. But going back to that moment, it was very easy for her to bring back that pain of being led on by Brad until that final day. I think it meant a lot to her, more than she’ll even let on, for Brad to call himself out and apologize.

What scandal should we expect to come to the surface this season?

Looking at moments like Rozlyn with a producer or the wrestler Justin with a girlfriend back home, those things either happen or they don’t. They’re not manufactured. You don’t have that kind of controversy this season, but the audience at home will see a lot more drama than Brad is privy to. When he watches the show, he’s going to be blown away on how much there is. It’s more like Vienna and Tenley in the house type of drama, and Brad never sees it.

I can only remember one time in Bachelor history that a woman has walked out of a Rose ceremony. Could it happen again?

For the first time at all the Rose ceremonies, Brad’s asking them to stay, and the women are deciding if they are going to. They have to think, “Is this guy real, and I’m going to stick around?” Usually the Bachelor and the Bachelorette are our heroes, and everyone’s happy to be there and ready to travel. This time, our Bachelor is just proving himself over and over.

Have you spoken with former Bachelor Jake Pavelka? Does he just want to be a star?

I really haven’t talked to him very much. I heard he got a job with Delta, which is good. He really wanted to be a star and got caught up in it, I know. He loves that, and I don’t blame him for that. From the outside looking in, it seems like a great life. I hope for his sake, he gets back to his piloting and what he loves.

He’s appearing on the soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful in January.

Is he really? Perfect. He’d be a good soap actor.

You spoke of the melting pot, so what will it take to get a Bachelor or Bachelorette of color starring on the show?

Does Roberto count? What I would like is for the world to be happy for great TV, regardless of who it is. Honestly, I have checked on it, and [black women] don’t audition for the show in nearly the numbers of other women, which is interesting. Percentage wise, it’s definitely skewed. You need to get out there and get the numbers up.

Well Chris, the TV DivaGal loves a challenge! If you’re a fellow hot Chocolate Diva who knows she would rock the Bachelor’s world, send us your pic and bio to tvdivagal@delainadixon.com. Our “Gal” Approved team will chose three and send them to Chris for consideration.

Watch the new season of The Bachelor beginning Monday, Jan. 3 on ABC.

photo credit: ABC

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