Peter Weber's The Bachelor season reportedly began filming on September 20, 2019 and premiered in early January 2020, and so if Matt's season starts filming around the same time this year, ABC should be able to roll out the premiere of his season in January 2021.
A January 2021 premiere would get ABC's schedule back on track, at least for The Bachelor franchise.
Clare's cast of 42 potential suitors was announced by ABC last week, but a premiere date for Season 16 has yet to be confirmed.
The Bachelorette was initially slated to begin production in March and air its sixteenth season in May, per usual, but the spread of and concerns over COVID-19 derailed ABC's plans and resulted in a long delay.
Given it's already late July, it appears Season 7 of Bachelor in Paradise won't be happening this year unless ABC decides to air it in the fall or winter.
During a late June episode of The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons -- Ever!, Matt touched base with franchise host Chris Harrison over videochat and discussed how his life had changed since ABC announced him as the Bachelor a few weeks earlier on Good Morning America.
"I think the grandkid counter for my mom started when that announcement was made," Matt joked with Harrison, adding, "She wants a basketball team. I'll have a minivan. That's the max -- as many as we can fit [in one car]."
Matt, who will be the first black The Bachelor star ever, said the reaction to hisThe Bachelor casting was positive overall.
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"It's been nice, because to be honest with you, I've heard from a lot of my black friends that aren't Bachelor-Nation faithful who are excited about me and honored I'm in the position I'm in and have this opportunity to just represent what it's going to look like to have diverse relationships and tell those love stories," Matt gushed.
Beginning with Jason Mesnick in 2009, every The Bachelor star has been someone who had previously competed as a suitor on The Bachelorette, with the exception of the show's 2011 season which featured Brad Womack getting a second chance at love after initially starring as the Bachelor in 2007.
Matt's The Bachelor casting announcement was made several months earlier than usual during on Good Morning America.
Historically, each year's The Bachelor star is not announced until late August or September, shortly before the season begins production.
ABC acknowledged at the time the network has "a responsibility" to implement diversity in The Bachelor franchise.
"We know we have a responsibility to make sure the love stories we're seeing onscreen are representative of the world we live in, and we are proudly in service to our audience," ABC Entertainment president Karey Burke said in a statement.
"This is just the beginning, and we will continue to take action with regard to diversity issues on this franchise. We feel so privileged to have Matt as our first Black Bachelor and we cannot wait to embark on this journey with him."
"Matt has been on our radar since February, when producers first approached him to join Bachelor Nation, as part of Clare's season. When filming couldn't move forward as planned, we were given the benefit of time to get to know Matt and all agreed he would make a perfect Bachelor."
Matt, a 28-year-old real estate broker, entrepreneur and community organization founder came into the limelight last year as The Bachelorette alum Tyler Cameron's best friend.
Clare will therefore miss out on getting to know Matt romantically, but he'll have his own set of around 30 women to date later this year.
"Matt's built for this. He's a great person," Tyler, who finished as the runner-up on Hannah Brown's season of The Bachelorette last year, told Harrison onThe Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons -- Ever!.
"His heart will really show and shine, and it will be interesting to see where his heart leads him now... [Matt is] going to change the world. [So he needs] someone to take on that challenge with him."
ABC reality chief Robert Mills told Ryan Seacrest during a late June appearance on On Air with Ryan Seacrest that The Bachelor had already seen a "record-setting pace" of 6,500 applicants for Matt's season by that point, which he called "fantastic."
Mills anticipated at the time Matt's The Bachelor season would probably begin filming even before Clare's edition of The Bachelorette airs.
"It made more sense to announce him [early] and get people applying and ready," Mills said, adding, "Matt's season, we're hoping to start on time, which would be end of September."
Mills had said there's a chance Matt's season could tape at The Bachelor mansion and feature some travel but times remain uncertain as coronavirus continues to spread globally.