Bachelor Nation is waiting with bated breath to find out who will be the next star of The Bachelor, but they’ll have to wait until after Bachelor in Paradise ends its summertime run to get the name of the lucky leading man. Or leading men.
That’s right, Bachelor host Chris Harrison recently teased the possibility of more than one Bachelor star, perhaps along the vein of that Kaitlyn Bristowe/ Britt Nillson two-fer during the 11th season of The Bachelorette when producers decided not to decide on one leading lady and instead let the 25 suitors choose.
For the upcoming 23rd season of the ABC dating show, longtime host Chris Harrison told E! News that a decision has not been made as to who the next Bachelor will be, and that it’s pending the finale of the summertime spinoff, Bachelor in Paradise.
“Because of Paradise…we have kind of a wait and see attitude. We have that luxury to wait a little bit because we don’t start production until Paradise ends, so we want to get a full range and a full scope of everything and take it all in before we make our final decision.”
Harrison went on to say that the selection of The Bachelor lead is a lengthy debate among producers and that it could come down to more than one name.
“People have to understand it’s less of a decision and more of an ongoing debate that lasts months and months, but we will name a Bachelor soon. Or Bachelors, or who knows?”
If producers opted for a multiple Bachelor format it wouldn’t be the first time the ABC reality franchise had fans seeing double. In 2015, Harrison told viewers on the live after-show following Chris Soules’ Bachelor season that there would be two Bachelorettes as Bristowe and Nillson vied for the title.
“We actually decided not to decide,” Harrison said of that season’s Bachelorette star. “For the first time in Bachelorette history, we’re gonna have two Bachelorettes. The 25 men on Night 1 are going to have the ultimate say about who they think would make the best wife.”
While Bristowe joked that the situation wasn’t ‘ideal,” Nillson called the gig “an amazing opportunity.” Bristowe would go on to become the sole Bachelorette, choosing Shawn Booth as her fiancé. (They’re still engaged).
As for who’s in the running for the next Bachelor role, Bachelorette runner-up Blake Horstmann, who melted hearts after his emotional goodbye to Becca Kufrin, told People he wouldn’t rule it out.
“It would be the hardest thing I’d do,” Horstmann said. “But I know this can work and if the opportunity presented itself, it would be something I would consider.”
Ditto for fan favorite Colton Underwood, who’s currently trying his luck in Paradise.
“I think that your gonna have to see how Paradise plays out,” Underwood told Entertainment Tonight of his chances to be The Bachelor. “If the timing is right in my life and if ABC’s ready for it, it would be something that you know I would consider. But first, we’re gonna have to get through Paradise.”
And then there’s Ben Higgins. The former Bachelor star has reportedly stayed in touch with producers and hasn’t ruled out reprising his role after his fizzled relationship with Lauren Bushnell.
“I have a great relationship with the show,” Higgins told ET. “And if they were ever to want me to go back on the show – I don’t know if they would or not – but they would know that, hey, this is a better relationship than the last time. It’s not me coming into it blind scenario where I don’t know anything. It’s a conversation of, ‘Is this really right for you right now?’ And we haven’t had those conversations yet but we always stay in touch.”
The Bachelor returns to ABC next January.