Kaitlyn Bristowe joins 'Dancing with the Stars' Season 29 cast after years of complaining 'The Bachelor' creator Mike Fleiss wouldn't let her
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 06/16/2020
Kaitlyn Bristowe will be competing on Dancing with the Stars' upcoming 29th season after years of complaining The Bachelor creator Mike Fleiss allegedly blocked her from the opportunity after she starred on The Bachelorette's eleventh season in 2015.
During Monday night's broadcast of The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons -- Ever!, Kaitlyn and her boyfriend, The Bachelorette alum Jason Tartick, videochatted with franchise host Chris Harrison at the end of a three-hour episode that recapped Kaitlyn's The Bachelorette season on ABC.
Harrison wanted to check in on Kaitlyn and hear the latest on her love life, and he began the conversation by telling Jason, "By the way, I know you mentioned about meeting your future wife. You know I'm an ordained minister."
Jason's jaw dropped with excitement, clearly knowing this is a dream come true for his girlfriend. And Kaitlyn appeared totally stunned and put her hands over her wide-open mouth.
"Are you serious?!" Kaitlyn shouted with glee.
"Dead serious," Harrison noted.
Kaitlyn was giddy and on the verge of tears, and she talked to herself, "Okay, Kaitlyn, play it cool. Play it cool!"
"Are you serious?!" Kaitlyn yelled again.
Jason and Kaitlyn looked at each other and Jason appeared to be just as thrilled.
"I'm shaking! Chris, oh my gosh. I'm going to cry! I feel like this is back to the moment where you told me I was the Bachelorette. That was the last thing in the world I thought you were going to say!" Kaitlyn gushed.
"I thought you were going to ask me to take over your job. I don't know, but that was, like, the last thing!"
Harrison joked he has two kids to put through college and so he's "not done yet."
"I'm literally freaking out!" Kaitlyn shouted.
"Is that a 'yes?' Because I need a 'yes' or 'no,'" Harrison said.
"Yes! Yes, yes, yes!" Kaitlyn celebrated. "Oh my God, I am so honored to say 'yes!'"
Harrison congratulated Kaitlyn and told her that she's "going to crush it" on Dancing with the Stars' next season, and Kaitlyn and Jason were just ecstatic over the invitation.
"Wow!" Jason cheered, before Kaitlyn thanked Harrison for always being supportive.
Harrison was glad to end Kaitlyn's season recap that way given her time on the show was very controversial.
The Bachelorette's eleventh season started out with two Bachelorettes competing for the role (the male suitors voted for Kaitlyn to be the star over Britt Nilsson) and Kaitlyn had sex with Nick Viall before she even entered the Fantasy Suite stage of the competition.
Shortly after Fleiss confirmed in March 2017 that Nick Viall had joined the Season 24 cast of Dancing with the Stars, Kaitlyn gave The Bachelor creator and executive producer a piece of her mind on Twitter.
When replying to a fan asking why more The Bachelorette stars don't compete on Dancing with the Stars, Kaitlyn claimed at the time, "Actually I was offered it, had the contract & Mike Fleiss told me I wasn't allowed. He said he didn't want people wanting fame after his show."
Kaitlyn subsequently told Entertainment Tonight in a statement, "I believe men and women should be afforded the same opportunities. That has not been the case with the Bachelorettes and the Bachelors."
"I had an offer to do Dancing With the Stars and was told by [Mike Fleiss] I could not. I was told by Mike that it is bad for his brand... I am a dancer and wanted to do it. [My then-fiance Shawn Booth] wanted me to as well. He even wrote Mike emails. I told Mike it was my passion."
"@kaitlynbristowe has my total support if she wants to appear on DWTS!!!" Fleiss wrote in reply to Kaitlyn's accusations.
"Thanks I'll get right on that opportunity 2 yrs ago," Kaitlyn fired back on Twitter. "I wonder what changed your mind?"
And then in October 2019, Kaitlyn vented on comedian Nikki Glaser's Talkhouse podcast, "They won't let me [go on the show]. I'll tell you exactly why I can't go on Dancing with the Stars.... Mike Fleiss is a piece of sh-t! He is the creator of The Bachelor, and he hates women... As long as he's in power with ABC, I will never get on that show," according to People.
But now that Kaitlyn is signed on for Dancing with the Stars later this year, Jason wrote Monday on Instagram, "Kaitlyn decided to forgo college to pursue dance, her dream was to always dance with professionals... 5 years later from making her debut on ABC we're heading to LA to make that dream come true."
"Mirror ball or not," he added, "you did it again... checked another box off your bucket list! And I'm freakin here for it!"
Joe Amabile -- who was sent home on Night 1 of Becca Kufrin's The Bachelorette season in 2018 but ended up appearing on Bachelor in Paradise's fifth season later that year -- also competed on the Fall 2018 season of Dancing with the Stars.
ABC has yet to announce the Season 29 premiere for Dancing with the Stars given production schedules on numerous reality shows have been delayed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic -- including this summer's seasons of both The Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise.