ABC announced Wednesday, January 8 that they are launching a new Bachelor spinoff in April called “Listen to Your Heart,” which will feature a cast of 20 men and women looking to make romantic connections and also beautiful music together — think The Bachelor meets A Star Is Born, said ABC president Karey Burke when the network made the announcement.
But the network didn’t announce who was hosting, so we had to ask Chris Harrison and executive producer Bennett Graebner if Harrison is going to host the spinoff. He’s a busy man, plus a father of two, so he might need a break. Here’s what they had to say.
Chris Harrison Will Be Hosting
“Chris Harrison is the host,” says Graebner. “I couldn’t be more excited. I really do think Bachelor Nation is going to feel like this is, in a way, a very familiar place. It’s a totally new format, it’s going to be an entirely new cast, and yet there will be elements of the show that feel like they come from the world of The Bachelor and Chris Harrison is one.”
“We’ll see. Yes, I do need a break,” says Harrison with a laugh. “I do need a break. Will I get one? No. But we’ll see about being a part of it. … We will see and you’ll maybe hear an announcement soon.”
When asked if we’ll see Harrison singing on the show, he tells us that he does sing, but he only does so at home when no one is around.
“I do sing. At home. I play guitar and sing in front of nobody ever,” says Harrison.
“Don’t listen to him! Those are lies! He’s never played guitar for us ever,” says Graebner. “He won’t do it. Every once in awhile I try to get him to do something really zany and he’s like, ‘C’mon, Bennett.’ But it’s a music show, he might have a leather jacket and an earring.”
All kidding aside, Harrison thinks the concept is going to be really exciting for viewers.
“I’ve known about the concept for at least six months and I love it,” says Harrison. “I helped kind of craft it and work on the idea just because it’s all in our family and when we’re on the road traveling around we’re always talking about what’s up. I love the concept. It really is A Star Is Born meets Bachelor in Paradise, and can we create that beautiful couple?”
But Will We See Past Bachelor Contestants?
ABC president Karey Burke told Heavy at the 2020 Television Critics Association winter press tour that “there is a possibility” of seeing former Bachelor contestants on “Listen to Your Heart,” but they first and foremost have to have musical talent — which naturally makes viewers think of Jed Wyatt, the singer/songwriter who proposed to Hannah Brown on The Bachelorette and was later revealed to have a girlfriend.
“Maybe you’ll see Jed on the show. Why not? Maybe that’s the show he should have been on all along because clearly, he didn’t sing the right tune with Hannah,” says Harrison with a laugh. But in all seriousness, he says that viewers might really respond to a redemption arc for Jed.
“I think in America, people can always redeem themselves. Well, maybe not everybody, but for the most part, America — as much as we love to tear people down, we love a comeback story,” says Harrison.
Graebner echoes Harrison’s sentiment, telling Heavy that they “haven’t shut the door” on having former contestants appear on “Listen to Your Heart,” but it would have to be the right person.
“It would have to be that perfect person, someone who’s a musician, who is single — sometimes that can be the hard part — and who we really feel like deserves another shot. Right now I’m not sure who that person is, but I’m not going to say that’s impossible,” says Graebner.
What Else Can They Tell Us About the Show?
Graebner has a few other little tidbits for Bachelor Nation.
“We’re going to be shooting primarily in Los Angeles, but we will be shooting in some other locations as well,” says Graebner. “It just feels like, with a show like this, it shouldn’t really be in Los Angeles. There are certain places that just feel better suited for a show about musicians.”
He also says that while he won’t yet reveal which music industry figures they’re talking to about coming on the show as mentors/judges, he will say they’re “very excited” about who they’re in talks with.
“We have a wish list. We’re talking to a lot of people, some really great people,” says Graebner. “Every day we’re on the phone talking to some big-name people. I would say we’re very excited, but I don’t want to give anything away just yet.”
Bachelor: Listen to Your Heart premieres Monday, April 13 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC. It will act as a programming bridge between when The Bachelor wraps and The Bachelorette premieres for its summer season.