The Bachelor: Emmanuel Acho replaces Chris Harrison because the reunion host

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It will be Emmanuel Acho, not Chris Harrison, who brings the Bachelor cast on the hot seat during the show’s After the Final Rose special.

Acho, a former NFL linebacker and Fox Sports analyst, will officially replace Harrison as the host of the traditional Finals special, which sees lead actor Matt James and his chosen winner return to discuss the season and their current relationship status, ours reports Sister site deadline. The two-hour finale of season 25 will air on Monday, March 15, at 8/7 a.m. Immediately afterwards, the Final Rose Special will be broadcast.

“It is both an honor and a privilege to host After the Final Rose,” Acho said in a statement. “This is an incredibly important episode in one of the most famous shows in television history.”

Harrison will be absent from the franchise following his controversial defense of current Bachelor candidate Rachael Kirkconnell after deciding to take a “period” of the franchise. When photos surfaced of Kirkconnell attending an antebellum party – a troubled gathering celebrating the pre-Civil War South and reinforcing racist images from that era – Harrison defended them in an extra interview conducted by Rachel Lindsay, who first black leading role of the Bachelorette. Despite Lindsay’s attempts to explain why Kirkconnell’s actions were unjustifiable, Harrison refused to “culture cancel” and suggested that Kirkconnell’s participation in the party just looked worse from today’s perspective.

The host later apologized for “speaking wrongly in a way that perpetuates racism,” and three days later announced that he would be pulling out of the franchise, including the upcoming Final Rose special. “The historic season of The Bachelor should not be marred or overshadowed by my mistakes or affected by my actions,” Harrison wrote at the time. “I strive to educate myself on a deeper and more productive level than ever before.”

Aside from this finale special, Harrison’s future with the franchise has yet to be determined.

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