ABC announced that Matt James is the next Bachelor for the 2021 season of the franchise.
For the past couple of days, Bachelor Nation has pushed producers and executives to pick a person of color for the upcoming season.
Rachel Lindsay has called out the show for only having one person of color as the lead in over 40 seasons.
This morning, ABC did just that as they picked the next lead for their franchise.
For months, fans had hoped that they would pick Mike Johnson, as he was a leading contender for weeks after appearing on Hannah Brown’s season.
But he decided to go to Bachelor In Paradise, so he already had two shots at finding love.
Matt James was previously on Clare Crawley’s season
Matt is new to the franchise, but he was previously supposed to appear on Clare Crawley’s season of the show.
He does have connections to former cast members.
For one, he’s close friends with Tyler Cameron, who placed second on Hannah’s season of the show. He also stayed with Tyler and Hannah at Tyler’s home in Florida during the quarantine’s early days.
James expressed excitement for the chance at appearing on Clare’s season of the show. But now that he’s the next Bachelor, he’s obviously not going to star on the upcoming Bachelorette season.
Back in May, Chris Harrison revealed that he had no idea whether Matt was still in the running as a Bachelorette contestant. At the time, he said he guessed James was still a contestant as he wanted to meet Clare.
Matt James made headlines over Cameo drama
Earlier this spring, Matt made headlines because Clare called out some of the guys selected to be on her season. She argued that some of the guys were already using The Bachelorette platform to gain fame and attention, including using Cameo to get money and fame.
At the time, Matt admitted that he was a frequent user of Cameo, but not for the reasons Clare suspected.
In fact, he uses Cameo to raise money for his charity. And he was doing this long before Clare came into the picture as the next Bachelorette.
Fans sided with Matt, saying Clare overreacted since he is using the platform to help others, not help himself.
ABC appears to stand behind Matt and his work, as they proudly announced him as the next Bachelor.
The Bachelor is currently on hiatus.