Chris Harrison Exits The Bachelor Franchise After Controversy

Chris Harrison’s temporary exit from The Bachelor is about to become permanent. After 19 years with the ABC franchise, he is leaving following his racism controversy earlier this year.

By Kisha Forde Jun 08, 2021 3:10 PMTags
Watch: Chris Harrison Exits "Bachelor" Franchise Permanently

Chris Harrison's journey has come to an end.
After almost 19 years of hosting The Bachelor, The Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise, the 49-year-old star is set to officially exit the franchise, E! News confirmed on June 8. According to Deadline, Harrison will allegedly receive an eight-figure settlement in exchange for not speaking out about his departure.

Harrison addressed his exit in an Instagram statement, which read, "I've had a truly incredible run as host of The Bachelor franchise and now I'm excited to start a new chapter. I'm so grateful to Bachelor Nation for all of the memories we've made together. While my two-decade journey is wrapping up, the friendships I've made will last a lifetime."

The news comes four months after he temporarily stepped aside from the series following his defense of Rachael Kirkconnell. Kirkconnell—who nabbed Matt James' final rose—faced controversy during her season after 2018 photos surfaced of her attending a plantation themed party.

Bachelor Nation Reacts to Chris Harrison Controversy

"The woke police is out there," he said during an interview with Rachel Lindsay. "And this poor girl Rachael, who has just been thrown to the lions, I don't know how you are equipped when you have never done this before, to be woke enough, to be eloquent enough, to be ready to handle this."

As backlash poured in, Harrison took to social media to apologize for "wrongly speaking in a manner that perpetuates racism." 

"To my Bachelor Nation family—I will always own a mistake when I make one, so I am here to extend a sincere apology," he wrote. "I have this incredible platform to speak about love, and yesterday I took a stance on topics which I should have been better informed."

Following his temporary departure, Emmanuel Acho stepped in to host the After the Final Rose special in March. And as Katie Thurston's Bachelorette journey begins, she'll have alums Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe by her side as mentors. Come this summer's Bachelor in Paradise, a rotating cast of guest hosts, including David Spade will fill in.