Matt James to Make History as First Black Male on The Bachelor

  • AUTHOR: isbah
  • POSTED ON: June 13, 2020

Popular ABC show, The
Bachelor, has decided to include Matt James in the show to make history. The
28-year-old star would become the first black man to be featured on the show as
announced by the channel on Friday. Even though the dating show has been running
for forty years now, the creators never thought of casting a black model. The
sister series of the show called The Bachelorette only had one black woman,
Rache Lindsay who led the show in the 2017 season.


Source: Variety

Matt James was being considered for the role of a suitor in The Bachelorette
but the shooting was delayed due to the pandemic.


“When filming couldn’t
move forward as planned, we were given the benefit of time to get to know Matt
and all agreed he would make a perfect Bachelor,”
ABC President Karey
Burke said in a news release. “We know we have a responsibility to make
sure the love stories we’re seeing onscreen are representative of the world we
live in, and we are proudly in service to our audience. This is just the
beginning, and we will continue to take action with regard to diversity issues
on this franchise.”

Source: Instagram

Tyler Cameron, who is a
fan-favorite, is close friends with James and he posted on Instagram saying,
“Congrats to my brother @mattjames919 on being named the Bachelor. This is all
a testament of who you are as a person. Now the world gets to see the person
you are and the heart you have. You can change the world. Proud of you and so
excited for you.”


The Bachelor group has
been called out for not being diverse enough and they said that they had plans
of including more people of color in the show as more seasons make their way to
our screens.


matters, and it is one of the most important ways our country can embrace its
diversity and evolve,”
read a statement from the group. “We will use our power
as viewers and fans to hold ABC and Warner Bros. accountable and demand they
use their platform in a more thoughtful, race-conscious, and socially
responsible way. It’s time that ABC, (producer) Mike Fleiss, and Warner Bros.
take demonstrable action to address the inequalities in casting, screen time,
and employment of minority groups.”


A petition was started
on to make the show more inclusive, not just with actors but also
with behind the scene artists like casting managers, camera crew, and
directors. The petition was signed by former Bachelor stars like Lindsay, JoJo
Fletcher, Ben Higgins, Arie Luyendyk Jr., Desiree Siegfried, Tyler Cameron,
Bibiana Julian, Dustin Kendrick, Olivia Caridi, Onyeka Ehie, Devin Harris,
Alayah Benavidez, Mykenna Dorn, Amanda Stanton, and Ashley Spivey.

Source: Zimbio

Lindsay was questioned about the petition and the lack of diversity on the show
in a recent interview with Good Morning America. She said, “I was hoping, when
I came on, to be a trailblazer (and to) increase diversity in the audience that
watches it and also who comes on the show and who could potentially be the
lead. I felt like the franchise had my back in that. But in the last three years,
there really haven’t been changes made.”


She further added, “I
want producers of color. I would like for them to cast leads that are
interested in dating outside of their race, aren’t just getting their
experience for the first time on national TV. I need the acknowledgement of
that, not putting a Band-Aid over the situation and just saying, ‘Here, we’re
gonna put this here, are you happy now?’”


Updated June 13, 2020
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