ABC Announces The First Black Bachelor & No, It’s Not Mike Johnson

Just days after Bachelor fans launched a campaign asking ABC to cast a more POC in the show, as both leads and contestants, the network announced that Matt James will be the next Bachelor, making him the first Black Bachelor in the franchise’s history. James, 28, was originally cast as one of Clare Crawley’s suitors for the upcoming season of The Bachelorette, which was delayed due to coronavirus. It’s unclear whether he’ll still be competing for Crawley’s final rose when production on her season picks back up.

James celebrated his new gig with an interview on Good Morning America on Friday, June 12. "I think it’s a step in the right direction," he said when asked about how his casting will impact diversity on The Bachelor. "This is hopefully the first of many black men to be in the position that I’m at now." While most of the interview focused on his historic new role, James did seem to hint at some kind of Bachelorette involvement, telling GMA anchors, "My first reaction was, ‘Does this mean I don’t get to meet Clare?’"

The new Bachelor also promised that he wouldn’t be the only person of color on his season, saying, "I’m hoping that when that limo pulls up, there’s a lot of diversity and I see every type of woman coming out of that limo."

More to come…

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