by Tierney Bricker | Fri., Aug. 18, 2017 12:40 PM
Who will be handing out the roses in season 22?
With Rachel Lindsay's season of The Bachelorette behind us and Bachelor in Paradise's fourth season underway, the search for the next lead of The Bachelor is officially on. And ABC seems to have their top pick, as E! News has learned Peter Kraus, Rachel's runner-up, is the frontrunner. But what happens if the fan-favorite, who bucked tradition by refusing to propose in the finale, turns them down...what happens then?
Like any other season, producers are considering multiple options for their next lead, and we're sharing all the latest Intel we've received from our sources about the men they are seriously considering for the job.
Like last summer, expect the official announcement to come at the end of Bachelor in Paradise's season, as producers are always on the lookout for someone to make a big splash with viewers on the spinoff.
As for right now, here are the contenders for the next Bachelor, and what they've said about possibly taking on the title:
While Mike Fleiss' recent tweet ("Do we really want a Bachelor who isn't ready to settle down with a woman he loves. Hmmm. Not what # is all about...") seems to indicate his reluctance to cast Rachel's runner-up as the next lead, we're told the 31-year-old is definitely the frontrunner and the No. 1 pick for the gig, should he want it.
"He is still fully considering it and wants to make sure he makes the right decision," a source tells us of Peter. "They are really pushing for him."
Courtesy of iHeartRadio
Multiple sources tell us that producers love the 26-year-old and are well aware of just how popular he is with the show's fanbase (650k followers and counting on Instagram), and expect it to grow even bigger throughout Bachelor in Paradise.
While Dean expressed his hesitance to take on the gig to E! News in the past, he most recently opened up about it on Ashley Iaconetti and Ben Higgins' podcast, Almost Famous.
"I, of course, would be flattered to be presented an opportunity like that," he said. "I'm publicly supporting Peter for Bachelor if he so chooses to have that position…but again I would never say no to an opportunity especially of that magnitude right away. I would definitely have to consider it quite a bit."
Once a contestant on JoJo Fletcher's season and Bachelor in Paradise season three, Wells is now the bartender on BIP's current season, with viewers already loving his sympathetic ear, words of wisdom and .GIF-worthy cute moments. And that kind of social media response is what producers keep an eye out for while on the spinoff. A source tells us they wouldn't be surprised if they attempt to shock people, like they did last summer when Nick Viall was announced as the next Bach, by having the Nashville-based radio personality go from pouring rosé to handing out roses.
And when asked by Ben Higgins and Ashley I. about whether or not he would ever be the Bach on their Almost Famous podcast, Wells said, "I don't know. That's a conversation that I'd have to have with my family. I think, I don't know, that's not something that I take lightly. I don't know if I would do that, to be honest with you. I think it's like, it might be nice to be asked to the prom, but I don't know if I'd really want to go."
Article continues below
It's a long shot, but his name is still being thrown around, per a source, thanks to the 29-year-old trainer's positive attitude ("It's miracle season!"), great showing during the After the Final Rose and compelling journey during Rachel's season.
Still, would he even be open to it? "Yes, if the opportunity presented itself and it made sense and it felt right in the moment, absolutely," Eric said on the Almost Famous podcast. "I'm open to it...because when you're open, great things happen."
Courtesy of iHeartRadio
While he's of the most beloved Bachelors of all-time, Ben, 28, has no interest in being the Bach again after his split from Lauren Bushnell. At least not right now.
"At this point in my life I am not ready to be the next Bachelor," Ben said on his Almost Famous podcast. "It just doesn't feel right. For whatever reason, it doesn't feel like a time in my life that I would be the best man possible for the women that would come on the season...At this point in my life, I don't think it's the wise thing to do, so I will not be your Bachelor for this next season."
Fingers crossed for season 23 maybe?
The personal trainer from Kaitlyn Bristowe's season, aka the other Ben, has definitely received a lot of attention since the Bachelor in Paradise premiere. That being said, would he be able to talk about anything other than his dog, Zeus? (We know, we know, editing.)
But again, producers always love to shock Bachelor Nation.
Article continues below
There's no chance of this happening, but if Rachel and Bryan Abasolo were in control of the decision, their pick would be Alex, the Russian with a penchant for booty-dancing on grandmas and bold prints.
"He's a very smart guy, good-looking. I think he would make the most interesting season," Bryan told E! News. "He's got that quirky personality."
Still: not gonna happen.
The Bachelor will return in January 2018.
This content is available customized for our international audience. Would you like to view this in our US edition?
This content is available customized for our international audience. Would you like to view this in our Canadian edition?
This content is available customized for our international audience. Would you like to view this in our UK edition?
This content is available customized for our international audience. Would you like to view this in our Australian edition?
This content is available customized for our international audience. Would you like to view this in our Asia edition?
Dieser Inhalt ist für internationale Besucher verfügbar. Möchtest du ihn in der deutschen Version anschauen?
This content is available customized for our international audience. Would you like to view this in our German edition?
Une version adaptée de ce contenu est disponible pour notre public international. Souhaitez-vous voir ça dans notre édition française ?
This content is available customized for our international audience. Would you like to view this in our French edition?