Exclusive

Bachelor Nation Stars Are "Apprehensive" to Join Bachelor in Paradise Amid Controversy

After the franchise became embroiled in controversy, several sources exclusively tell E! News, "many people are declining" the opportunity to be on the seventh season of BiP.

By Alyssa Morin Mar 30, 2021 10:25 PMTags

Will you accept this rose?

That's the million-dollar question ABC appears to be asking Bachelor Nation stars, as several sources exclusively tell E! News the network is making plans for the seventh season of Bachelor in Paradise.

However, one insider explains past contestants are hesitant to join The Bachelor spin-off amid the ongoing controversies surrounding the franchise that involved Rachael Kirkconnell's social media scandal, as well as Chris Harrison's decision to temporarily step down as host after he received backlash for defending the star.

"Casting has begun and some members of Bachelor Nation are apprehensive to sign up," the insider shares. "Some are wondering what direction the season will take and are curious if it will strictly focus on contestants falling in love."

A second source echoes the same sentiments, adding, "They have put out several asks to Bachelor veterans. Many people are declining due to the current state of Bachelor Nation. A lot of people are removing themselves from the franchise."

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According to the second insider, the network is "hoping to get Blake HorstmannTia Booth, and Becca Kufrin. Producers are not considering most of the women from Matt [James]'s season."

Both Blake and Tia were contestants on past seasons of Bachelor in Paradise. While Becca was never looking for love in the series, she did make a special appearance in season five to give the girls advice.

All three have yet to publicly discuss if they have been approached for the show. 

ABC

Additionally, there were rumors that Kelley Flanagan was in talks to join the upcoming season. 

In January, she told her Instagram followers she'd "definitely consider it" following her and Peter Weber's split. However, earlier this month, she confirmed she's not really single anymore. A separate insider tells E! News, "She turned down BIP because she is dating someone."

Although some sources indicate Bachelor Nations stars are feeling uncertain about signing onto the new season of Bachelor in Paradise, another insider tells E! News, "This could be the best cast ever."

"There is talk of having two years' worth of cast due to no Bachelor in Paradise last year," the third source explains. "They are in talks with multiple former leads. For the first time in franchise history, there will very likely be former Bachelors and Bachelorettes hitting the beach in Mexico."

At this time, the network has not responded to multiple requests for comment.

Even though the seventh season of Bachelor in Paradise remains a mystery, there's one exciting announcement the franchise made recently: They will have two, back-to-back seasons of The Bachelorette.

Katie Thurston and Michelle Young will be handing out roses and looking for their special someone. Both stars appeared on Matt's season.

While details are still being ironed out, click here to stay up-to-date on the latest and greatest Bachelor Nation news.

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