Update, 8/3, 4 p.m.: Per reports that Clare Crawley has quit the titular role of The Bachelorette and will be replaced by fan-favorite Tayshia Adams, you can expect to have to wait a little longer. Crawley's season of The Bachelorette had only just begun filming, with a tentative air date being the fall of 2020, so hopefully it won't be too much longer before Adams' season airs. Crawley was only a few weeks into her tenure as The Bachelorette, and so, assuming that the show begins filming with Tayshia immediately (fingers crossed!), it will only be a few weeks later than expected. So: Halloween, anyone?
Original post: Just in case you missed the big announcement, get excited: Clare Crawley is the new Bachelorette. And you won't have to wait too long before you get the season delivered straight to your eyeballs: The Bachelorette famously films for less time than its male show counterpart, and there's significantly less of a wait time between the finale and the premiere date. We have, as of this writing, about two months before we watch it all start to unfold. Here's what we know.
The Bachelor announcement doesn't mean that The Bachelorette is cancelled.
In light of the epic, historic news that Matt James has been cast as the first Black Bachelor in franchise history, fans are wondering what this early announcement may mean for scheduling of his season as well as Clare Crawley's. Thus far, we still don't have confirmation that Crawley's started filming yet. Creator Mike Fleiss made a cryptic comment over the weekend, saying, "Very excited to begin filming #TheBachelorette and #TheBachelor!!!" but it's unclear whether that was a sign that production had begun for one or both of them, or whether it was a more general statement of enthusiasm. Chances are, The Bachelor won't start filming until the fall. In fact, Chris Harrison tweeted in response to a fan question that they would still be doing Crawley's season, and that it would be before James'.
Meanwhile, Crawley posted in her Instagram Stories that she took a few days off to commemorate the anniversary of her father's death, saying, "I am forever grateful for the people in my world that know my heart + fill my life with so much love when I am struggling." So she's been quiet on social media as well, but she hasn't started filming yet. If the producers are sticking to a June/July timeframe, we should get word pretty soon when it's happening, where, and what the new structure of the show will look like. Many states are easing up on restrictions about businesses opening and quarantining, but several states have seen surges in confirmed cases, so things are still up in the air.
We're now looking at a tentative fall air date.
Welp. It has been a long and unexpected road—not just with reality TV, but with life in general—because of the coronavirus pandemic. The producers have (wisely) chosen to delay filming, but as confirmed exclusively to Variety, we now have some tentative plans. It'll shoot in the middle of the summer, with an air date sometime in the fall 2020.
This has led to some major, basically unprecedented show changes: The show will now take place in one, singular location, like some kind of one-woman Bachelor in Paradise (which is, btw, probably not happening this year). "As of right now, the plan is to get a great location that has a ton of space where everybody could safely be together and we can still have great dates that still feel big and romantic, and we would shoot the entire season there,” said ABC reality head Robert Mills. I feel like it could get horribly boring, but frankly I'm just glad it's happening at all.
It also means that Crawley's list of contestants may change, since the producers are confirmed to be recasting. All members of cast and crew will be tested and then essentially quarantined for the duration of filming. Who knows what kind of spoilers we might (or might not) get for the season, but TBD on that one. We likely haven't seen the last of the changes, so watch this space.
We have a premiere date!
According to the official ABC website, we got an original start of Crawley's journey of May 18, 2020. For context, Hannah Brown's season premiered at roughly the same date, May 13, 2019. In between The Bachelor finale and The Bachelorette premiere, we have that strange The Bachelor Presents: Listen to Your Heart situation.
And we may have a finale date.
With that in mind, looking at Brown's season similarly gives us a clue to Crawley's potential finale date. Brown's "After the Final Rose" took place on July 29–30, 2019. So we might be looking at a finale of August 3–4, 2020 for Clare. Of course, much of that depends on the season itself—if you'll recall, the producers had to shorten Colton Underwood's season of The Bachelor because he just quit the show to go be with Cassie Randolph. They didn't have enough footage to round out an entire season—but what they did get, incidentally, was some of the most dramatic in franchise history. So sometimes a short season can be good, is my point. And then it'll be on to Bachelor in Paradise!
Either way, we'll update if anything changes.
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