ABC exec reveals when 'The Bachelor' producers decided Clare Crawley needed to be replaced as 'The Bachelorette' star
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 10/28/2020
ABC executive Robert Mills has revealed when The Bachelor producers decided Clare Crawley needed to be replaced asThe Bachelorette star given she had fallen so hard and fast for bachelor Dale Moss.
After The Bachelorette's latest episode aired on Tuesday night, former The Bachelor star Nick Viall released his interview with Rob on his The Viall Files podcast in which Rob dished on when it became apparent to producers Tayshia Adams needed to take over the show for Clare.
According to Rob, the group date in which a group of men roasted Dale and Clare decided to give herself a rose was the telltale sign the 39-year-old hairstylist's journey to find love on the show must end early.
"The guys are starting to be in revolt. It was a combination of Clare sort of [being] fixated on Dale, and those shots with producers, we don't really like to show [them] because it's breaking the fourth wall. Especially now, we've tried to show less and less, if at all -- if possible," Rob explained.
"And we had to show that scene where she's just like, 'That wasn't funny.' So you can see what's going through Clare's head."
Rob added, "And then at the cocktail party, every one-on-one is [Clare asking], 'So tell me why you said that about Dale. Tell me what goes on.'"
Rob said Clare's focus and attention on Dale was very "controversial" at the time.
"And we were like, 'Oh my God, we've really got to start thinking about this.' When she didn't give out that rose and just gave it to herself... that was it," Rob revealed.
"That was really it. That is when we started making the call [to replace her]."
According to reports that circulated this past summer, Clare fell in love with Dale just 12 days into filming and quit the show in order to pursue a real relationship with him. Life & Style even reported that Clare "refused to come out of her room" at one point to film.
However, Reality Steve spoiler blogger Steve Carbone reported in late September that producers knew all along they were going to replace Clare because her feelings for Dale were evident in her pre-show conversations.
Carbone wrote in his blog that producers were never put in a tough spot or left scrambling over how to proceed with Season 16 after Clare became smitten with Dale.
"[Production] were the ones that went to [Clare] bringing up the scenario of basically,'What do you think of ending this now with Dale?' They both agreed.... So Clare falling for Dale early... this was gonna be their 'twist' from this season." Carbone claimed.
Nick therefore asked Rob whether Clare opted to leave the show on her own or producers thought to themselves, "We can't get through this whole season, the way this is going."
"I just wonder... if we had done a regular season with travel, maybe it would've been [different]," Rob wondered.
Given Clare still had six more weeks of filming at the same location, La Quinta Resort & Club in Palm Springs, CA, Rob figured, "At that point, maybe [Clare] was like, 'I just can't fake it through this.'"
"I think it was just this one person that she believes -- I mean, she said it, 'I think I met my husband,'" he added. "I think she just couldn't keep doing it anymore. I think she was sort of going crazy a little bit."
Rob and Nick agreed it's "pretty common" for The Bachelor and The Bachelorette leads to pick a frontrunner early on and so producers weren't necessarily worried at the start of Clare's season.
"No offense to you Nick, but I think [Andi Dorfman]'s season, that was a little bit of a problem... She did have a one-on-one [date] with you, and it was like, 'Okay, I think we might have a horse race here,' but it was really always going to be [Josh Murray]," Rob said, referencing how Nick finished Andi's season as the runner-up.
"[JoJo Fletcher] will be on later in the season, she's going to be filling in for [Chris Harrison] and she talks a little bit a about it too. She kind of knew Night 1 it was [Jordan Rodgers]... So that's what it was here."
Rob explained, "We were like, 'Okay, Clare, there will be some other people.' And we sort of saw that in the first few episodes with Blake Moynes, who had a good time with her on Night 1, and some of the other guys. We've had a few one-on-one dates, but nothing to where [she was at with Dale]. That was the big worry at this point [that] it was just going to be Dale from Episode 1 to Episode 10."
"We were like, 'God, are we even going to have a show?!'" Rob shared.
Rob, however, believes Clare and Dale never talked and got to know each other before filming of The Bachelorette commenced in July. (Dale was announced as a potential bachelor back in March, so he and Clare had four months to potentially reach out to one another behind the scenes).
"She was asked, 'Did you guys speak before this season?' And she swears on her dad's grave, which is the most sacred thing you can, that they didn't -- that she's never seen this guy [prior to Night 1]," Rob told Nick.