The #1 question I’ve gotten since the postponement has been “Are they going to recast Clare’s guys?” Again, none of us know because the show has the ultimate answer to that question. The ONLY thing we’ve seen from anyone involved in the show regarding that was Fleiss’ tweet the other day:
— Mike Fleiss (@fleissmeister) March 14, 2020
The problem is, Fleiss has been known to blow smoke up peoples asses on social media. So we have no idea if he’s serious or not. But lets think about this realistically. All 32 guys that were announced on ABC’s “Bachelorette” Facebook page, even though they’ve since been taken down, are out there all over the place. Not only does Clare know all the guys on her season now, but they all know each other. And that takes away one of the major elements that the show is based around, which is, the “Bachelor/ette” is meeting their women/men for the first time when they walk out of the limo (minus the last 3 Bachelorettes that got to meet 5 of their men early). But you know get what I’m saying. Are they really going to change the basic format of the show? Strictly as a guess here, I’d say no. I can’t imagine, if/when filming resumes, they’re just gonna tell all 32 guys “Hey, time to fly back. We’re ready to go.” I just don’t see it. Maybe some won’t even want to anymore. We’ve just never been in this situation before where guys had time to rethink and maybe back out after already being set to be on the show. Do I think ALL 32 are going to get recast? No. I think they’d have some holdovers. But I would really be surprised, shocked actually, if this ended up being her final cast of guys.
Now, lets talk about Clare’s season overall and the filming schedule. Clare was supposed to begin filming this past Friday, March 13th. Filming would’ve ended anywhere between the 8th-10th of May, with her premiere set for May 18th. Again, nothing has been said by the network officially, but we’ve all seen and read the news about what’s going on. I don’t see how Clare’s filming isn’t delayed AT LEAST 2 months. So, you can throw that May 18th premiere date out the window because I don’t think it’ll even START filming by May 18th, so certainly it can’t premiere by then. Which then produces a whole bunch of questions that, unfortunately, we have zero answers for. But just ponder some of these, as I’m talking out loud and looking at this realistically:
-Lets say Clare’s filming begins on an arbitrary date of June 1st (and I think I’m still being generous with that start date of filming). Filming for “Bachelorette” lasts 7 weeks. Well, “Bachelor in Paradise” for its first 6 seasons has filmed for 18 days in June, usually starting anywhere between June 5th-7th. With a Clare season beginning filming June 1st (if it does), that pushes BIP filming back until AT LEAST August, because “Bachelorette” would have to wrap first, and then you’d need time to get down to Mexico and set up.
-But for the sake of argument, lets say that’s what happens and BIP films mid August for it’s standard 2+ weeks. Well, if Clare’s season starts filming June 1st, and we know turnaround time on “Bachelorette” is usally 1-2 weeks after filming ends before it airs, that would put Clare’s “premiere” date somewhere in early August. Lets call it August 3rd, which is being generous again. “Bachelorette” is an 11 week show. That puts Clare’s finale on Oct. 12th. The earliest Paradise would start would be the next night and run for it’s standard 6 weeks. Are they really going to run “Bachelor in Paradise” in the winter months, ending it the week of Thanksgiving?
-In addition, here’s another thing no one has really thought of. What about ABC’s scheduling? Once again, nothing has been announced yet, but seemingly we’re having a fall season of DWTS. In the past, fall DWTS has immediately started airing right after Paradise ended. Well if Clare’s season doesn’t start airing til August 3rd, with Paradise happening after that starting in Oct, and all 3 shows air on ABC, explain how that is gonna work? Either DWTS loses out on a fall season or “Bachelorette” does. Because starting to air Clare’s season basically anytime after July 1st I don’t see how you can fit that in along with a fall season of DWTS.
-With all this said, the “Bachelor/ette” franchise is more important to ABC than BIP. So if anything gets cut between those 3 shows, it’s BIP. I have a feeling we’re not gonna have a “Paradise” this summer. Just looking at this realistically, I don’t see how they can fit this in.
-I know a lot of you will say “Well, why can’t ABC just move stuff around, or air two episodes a week, or Bachelorette and Paradise the same week, etc.” First off, TV just doesn’t work that way. For years they’ve been on that same exact schedule and never had to deviate. Hell, ALL OF OUR LIVES have pretty much been on the same exact schedule until this virus hit. Things are changing. And unfortunately, that means so is our TV schedule. “What if Clare’s season starts filming June 1st but they start airing it July 1st, kill BIP, and so Clare’s season ends in time for a DWTS premiere mid September?” Ok, possible. But, that means Clare’s season will only be down to the final 4 by the time it starts airing on TV. They’ve never had to turn it around that quick, and I honestly don’t think they would because they want to know the ending and how the final 4 shakes out, because that determines how they edit the first 7 episodes. Could it happen? Sure. Would it? Not likely.
-Here’s the other major issue I’m seeing in regards to a June 1st start date for Clare AND a re-casting of her show. How do you do both? Do you ask guys who have already gone through testing and meeting with producers that you already told “no” to and say, “Hey, we think we want you now?” Because if you don’t, now you then need to go through your rolodex, and fly a new batch of guys to LA to go through testing and meeting with producers to get them ready for Clare’s season. When is that gonna happen? It doesn’t look like “casting for the Bachelorette reality show” is a real top priority in this nation right now. That wouldn’t even begin to start happening until we’re all clear of this virus and things get somewhat back to normal. But when no one can answer when that’ll be right now, it really is impossible to know anything about if/when Clare’s season begins filming and if there will be new guys.
-I’ve got another one for you: What if we’re not seemingly in the clear of this until August/September (which is kinda what it’s looking like if you ask health experts). Well, filming for the “Bachelor” starts mid-September through mid-November. So does ABC say, “We’re gonna film Clare’s season in place of where the ‘Bachelor’ would normally film, it’ll air starting Jan of 2021 like the ‘Bachelor’ would’ve, and now the schedules are flipped, and the ‘Bachelor’ will start filming mid-March of next year and start airing in May of 2021?” Or, do they just cancel the “Bachelorette” for the calendar year of 2020, and once we hit a “point of no return” and they can’t fit Clare’s filming schedule in, they just say we’re going with the “Bachelor” and no “Bachelorette” in 2020? That’s possible. And IF that happens, does Clare get screwed out of being the “Bachelorette” come 2021 and they’d take one of the women from the next “Bachelor” season? Or the next “Bachelorette” season we have, it’s gonna be Clare no matter what? Because if that’s the case, then whoever is on the next “Bachelor” season can basically be pissed the whole season that it won’t lead to them being the next “Bachelorette” for at least a year, since then every cycle would kinda be pushed back a year. Is your head spinning yet?
-Look, none of us know where this is headed. But we DO know the “Bachelor,” “Bachelorette,” and “Bachelor in Paradise’s” filming schedule. So to say there’s an easy solution – there isn’t. Unless we’re all over this pandemic in two weeks or even a month, then everything could go on as normal and everything would just be delayed by that time. But I think even the most optimistic person can see that’s not where this is headed. So, I just wanted to lay out everything I could think of based off of a June 1st start date of filming for Clare and you’re seeing just how difficult THAT would be to fit everything in. We just don’t know enough right now, but I think of what we do know, it’s looking real tough for both of them to make air in 2020. This is all just speculation knowing their shooting schedules, but until ABC comes out with definitive statements, we just don’t know for sure.
Send all links and emails to: firstname.lastname@example.org. To follow me on Twitter, it’s: www.twitter.com/RealitySteve. Instagram name is “RealitySteve,” or join my Reality Steve Facebook Fan Page. Talk to you tomorrow.