Following widespread criticism for his comments perpetuating racism, longtime “Bachelor” host Chris Harrison will be replaced by Emmanuel Acho for the “After the Final Rose” episode, Variety has learned.
Acho is a best-selling author and the host of the online series “Uncomfortable Conversations With a Black Man,” which serves to spark meaningful dialogue around racial ignorance. The show launched in June 2020 and has more than 80 million views to date. A former NFL linebacker, Acho is also an analyst for Fox Sports and the co-host of “Speak for Yourself.”
During the special, airing March 15 after the show’s finale, Acho will sit down with “Bachelor” lead Matt James, as well as his final three women: Bri, Michelle and Rachael. Acho will discuss the outcome of the finale and the current events surrounding the “Bachelor” franchise.
“It’s both an honor and privilege to be hosting ‘After the Final Rose.’ This is an incredibly pivotal episode on one of the most storied shows in television history,” Acho said in a statement.
Former “Bachelorette” Rachel Lindsay said in an interview with People this week that Acho would be her pick to replace Harrison, though it is unclear if her suggestion affected ABC’s decision.
“For AFTR, Bryan and I both talked about this — we think Emmanuel Acho would be fantastic,” Lindsay told People, adding that Acho is “very outspoken about racial injustice, for social justice, and has pretty much been the person who said, ‘I can have these uncomfortable conversations, and people trust it.’”
“Who better to lead it?” Lindsay continued. “[He’s] someone who’s not involved with the franchise, no ties, no bias — I think it’d be great.”
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SOURCE: Variety, Elizabeth Wagmeister and Ellise Shafer