Arie Luyendyk Jr. knows he currently holds the title of Most Hated Bachelor. After dumping his final pick, former fiancée Becca Kufrin, on camera a few weeks after popping the question in Peru, the 36-year-old race car driving realtor bested Juan Pablo Galavis when it came to bad Bachelor behavior. But now, ahead of his wedding to Lauren Burnham, Arie is speaking out about why he broke Becca’s heart and proposed to his runner-up weeks after The Bachelor wrapped.
In an interview with GQ, Arie reiterated that he was conflicted during his final hours as The Bachelor. Even on the morning he proposed, he wasn’t sure which woman he should propose to. Arie admitted he was stressed by the production schedule of the ABC reality show and he felt pressured to propose to someone.
Luyendyk ultimately proposed to Kufrin with a three-carat Neil Lane diamond ring, but immediately felt like he had let his soul mate Lauren slip away. With no other contact information available, The Bachelor star slid into Lauren’s DMs on Instagram and spoke to her on the phone on New Year’s Day.
“As soon as I heard her voice, I knew that I had to end things with Becca,” Arie told GQ of Lauren.
Arie Luyendyk Jr. went on to give the dirty details about how his on-camera breakup with Becca Kufrin really went down. Warning: It is not pretty.
Arie revealed that after he reconnected with Lauren on the phone and realized he was still in love with her, he approached Bachelor producers with his predicament. Luyendyk claims it was producers who came up with the idea of filming the blindside breakup. Luyendyk revealed that Bachelor producers told him if they filmed the private moment, it would ensure that fans knew he was following his heart and that they would be happy that he took such a big risk for love. Instead, fans were furious.
Arie explained that he considered The Bachelor producers and camera crew to be his friends, but after his on-camera breakup blew up, Luyendyk said he now feels”100 percent” betrayed by them.
Luyendyk also revealed that the breakup scene, which was widely promoted as “the first completely unedited scene in reality television history,” was anything but. The extended scene showed Becca repeatedly asking Arie to leave her alone, with him continuing to try to talk to her after breaking up with her.
“It was completely edited. I was told to stay on that couch. I tried to leave, and then production was like, ‘You need to go back inside. She’s finally calming down. I feel like you owe it to her to have this conversation.’ So then I went back in the house…I left, came back. I stepped away from the couch, I went back to the couch. They cut out, obviously, production talking to me from 10 feet away.”
Arie feels that calling the extended scene unedited “was super unfair” to him. Still, he says he still has love for The Bachelor team and understands their need to make good TV. In the end, Luyendyk even thinks the on-camera breakup worked out in Becca’s favor. After the awkward encounter aired, Kufrin was promptly announced as the next star of The Bachelorette.
“Everyone makes me out to be the bad guy for filming it,” Arie told GQ of the breakup.
“I think if you look back at it now, it was positive for everyone. Everyone ended up getting closure and also an opportunity to be with the person that they were really meant to be with. I don’t understand why I’m the fall guy for filming the breakup on a television show which we all signed up to be on.”
While Arie says he still feels love for The Bachelor crew, it’s interesting to note that his wedding to Lauren Burnham will not be filmed by ABC’s cameras. The controversial Bachelor couple will wed in a private ceremony in Hawaii next year.
“It’s in Maui — it’s at Haiku Mill which has this beautiful, old world feel with a lot of vines and greenery,” Luyendyk Jr. recently told The View. “It’s not your typical beach wedding. And it’s a private wedding, so not on TV — just a close group of friends. Probably 100 guests.”
As for Kufrin, she’s set to start her journey as The Bachelorette, and it apparently ends well for her. It has already been announced that Kufrin found a new fiancé out of her 28 suitors. Arie told People he wishes his ex the best of luck with her new man.
“We’re really excited to see how her journey unfolds,” The Bachelor star said. “I know that we’re announcing our wedding really close to her premiere, but I think we wanted to do it now because we didn’t want to have our announcement happen during her season, out of respect for her. I know that she’s happily engaged and we’re really happy for her.”
The Bachelorette airs Mondays on ABC.