Before Peter Weber, there was Peter Kraus. And knowing what we know now, boy would we have loved a season of The Bachelor with Peter Kraus as its lead.
After coming in second to Bryan Abasolo on Rachel Lindsay's season of The Bachelorette in 2017, Peter was a total shoo-in for the job. But in a controversial twist, Arie Luyendyk Jr. took the spot and Peter's quest for love on reality TV came to an abrupt end.
Now three years later, Peter has revealed what went down behind-the-scenes while negotiating his Bachelor contract. During a wide-ranging interview on The Ben and Ashley I Almost Famous podcast, Peter said he rejected producers three times before flying out to Los Angeles for a "formal" discussion about becoming the Bachelor.
"I told [the producers] I had started to talk to someone and they said, ‘Are you guys in a relationship?' I said, ‘No,' and they said, ‘Would you be willing to leave that or exit that?'" Peter recalled. "I wasn't sure... It was really hard for me and I couldn't say I would for sure get in an engagement at the end of the show. It wasn't that I knew for a fact that I didn't want to. It was more that I couldn't promise them that I would and I didn't want to be forced to do it if I said yes to the show."
When the topic of compensation came up, Peter remembered telling producers, "Well, I make considerably more than that already per year. Why would I give up the rest of my life of being 'Peter The Bachelor' and no longer just Peter for the amount of money that isn't life changing?'"
"We all agreed it wouldn't make sense to pay a lot of money because you're no longer doing it for the right reasons," he went on.
Peter denied that the paycheck played a "major factor" in his decision, instead outlining a number of more personal changes he wanted to see come to fruition on the show.
"I wanted to be able to spend more time with people individually," he explained. "I wanted to be able to just go into the house and see people in their natural habitat so that way it didn't feel like they were putting on a show for me. It was more like this is who you actually are when you're unsuspecting of where I'm at."
The personal trainer also requested "relationship counseling for myself and the top four or five girls during the process so we could work things out on a deep level. Then I wanted continued support for myself and the person that I chose after the fact, because I saw the pressure that Bryan and Rachel were put under and I thought it was extremely unfair."
Peter and producers couldn't compromise in the end, but the 35-year-old said he has no regrets about the experience. He is, however, still looking for answers as to why just days before filming began for The Bachelor Winter Games, producers texted him and said he was no longer part of the cast.
"My personal opinion was that Arie was the Bachelor at the time and because I was the guy that could've been the Bachelor, maybe they just didn't want the conversation to be had. They just wanted to nip it in the bud," he surmised.
As for his own love life, Peter confirmed to co-hosts Ben Higgins and Ashley Iaconetti that he is still very much on the market.
"I want to wait until I find someone that is my best friend first and we develop a relationship that is undeniable in its connection and then from there take the next steps in life. I've grown a lot since being on the show and changed a lot in my life. I think I really know what I want and I'm not wasting my time with things that aren't there for me," he said.
But as for a return to The Bachelor franchise?
As Peter described, "I won't do Bachelor in Paradise personally, especially knowing that the group of girls that were just on the show were really young. I'd like to date 30 and above if possible... I just don't see myself being successful on there."