Wells Adams admits he was disappointed he wasn't picked as new 'The Bachelor' host instead of Jesse Palmer
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/08/2021
Bachelor in Paradise bartender Wells Adams has admitted he felt deflated when ABC passed on him and appointed Jesse Palmer as the new host of The Bachelor for Season 26 in 2022.
Wells got a little taste of what hosting The Bachelor would be like when he served as the "master of ceremonies" for Bachelor in Paradise's seventh season, which was co-hosted by a lineup of celebrities this past summer.
And in July, Wells told Entertainment Tonight that he'd like to be a part of the franchise "in whatever aspect" ABC wants him to be involved going forward, suggesting he'd love to continue serving as host.
ABC and Chris publicly declared in June that Chris' voluntary leave of absence from The Bachelor franchise -- which began in February -- has become a permanent one and he will not return as host for any future seasons.
Chris announced in February he'd be "stepping aside" from his hosting duties with The Bachelor franchise "for a period of time" to educate himself on racism in society in a "profound" and "productive" manner after he made offensive remarks in an Extra interview withThe Bachelorette's first Black leading lady, Rachel Lindsay.
In the early-February Extra interview, Chris had defendedThe Bachelor Season 25 contestant Rachael Kirkconnell's racially-ignorant and racially-insensitive actions in the last several years and adopted a dismissive attitude towards photos of Rachael that resurfaced from an antebellum-plantation themed "Old South" fraternity party at Georgia College & State University in 2018.
Chris had called for "grace" and "compassion" for Rachael and also criticized the "woke police" and the "unbelievably alarming" response of anger and frustration to the young woman's actions.
Chris subsequently issued three apologies for his offense, two on Instagram and one verbal apology during a March appearance on Good Morning America.
On GMA at the time, Chris expressed his hope he'd be able to return to The Bachelor franchise, explaining, "This is a franchise that has been a part of my life for the better part of 20 years and I love it. I plan to be back and I want to be back."
But Katie Thurston refused to star on The Bachelorette's seventeenth season in March if Chris was going to participate, and several sources told E! News in April that "many" The Bachelor and The Bachelorette alums from seasons past were "apprehensive" about signing up for Bachelor in Paradise 7 or even declined their invitations in the wake of Chris' racism controversy.
One insider told the website at the time, "A lot of people are removing themselves from the franchise."
Paradise bachelor, Ivan Hall, for example, told E!'s Daily Pop in February, "If they have future shows and if they were to ask me to be on Bachelor in Paradise or something like that -- and I'm sure a lot of other contestants feel this way as well -- I wouldn't feel comfortable if Chris is there, to be quite frank."
Ivan added, "[I'm] not saying he can't make a recovery, can't learn from all of this, but, you know... it would just be too soon, really."
Chris' exit from the franchise appeared to split Bachelor Nation and fans everywhere down the middle.
While many people believed Chris leaving the show was the right thing to do, others -- including Sean Lowe and Michelle Money -- suggested cancel culture is not a good solution and they'd boycott the franchise if Chris is no longer a part of it.