Bachelorette Executive Reveals Moment Producers Knew They Needed a Replacement

Clare Crawley and Chris Harrison

ABC Clare Crawley and host Chris Harrison during a group date on The Bachelorette.

For the first time since reports surfaced in July that Clare Crawley left The Bachelorette after only 12 days of filming, ABC is finally acknowledging that Tayshia Adams is taking over as the show’s lead. The 30-year-old replacement appeared at the tail end of a promo at the conclusion of the third episode of the show.

With the cat out of the bag, ABC executive Robert Mills joined former Bachelor star Nick Viall on his podcast, Viall Files, to discuss The Bachelorette. On the show, Mills confirmed what many (including Crawley) began to theorize: That Adams was picked out as a replacement before Crawley even left the show.

Spoilers expert Reality Steve reported in September that Adams was “headed to La Quinta” nine days after filming started, which he said meant “this was in production’s plan before Clare’s season started.” But Mills offers a different account. In his conversation with Viall, he said it was the way that Crawley’s season was unfolding that forced producers to come up with a contingency plan.

The Comedy Roast Group Date Was the Final Straw

The theme of episode three of The Bachelorette was Dale, Dale, and more Dale. In the first group date of the episode, Crawley brought her clear favorite and frontrunner back to her room, leaving a group of confused men sitting and waiting impatiently for a turn to talk to her. Dale’s monopoly of Clare’s attention started to build resentment among the other contestants.

That bubbled over into the second group date when several of the suitors were asked to perform a roast. Many of the jokes were directed at Dale, and that bothered Clare. Later in the evening, she spoke endlessly about Dale and opted against giving a rose to any of the men on the date.

“At the time it was sort of controversial,” Mills said. “This was the time when we started thinking ‘Oh my god, like we’ve really got to start thinking about this.’ When she didn’t give out that rose and just gave it to herself.”

“I felt like I saw that coming,” Viall replied. “It’s like ‘Dale’s not on this date, I’m just not going to give a rose.'”

“Right. That was it,” Mills said. “That was it, that was when we started making the call.”

Bachelorette Producers Were Initially Worried About Dale Moss Going ‘Wire to Wire’

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Life is good 💯

A post shared by Dale Moss (@dalemoss13) on Oct 27, 2020 at 6:47am PDT

There’s not much intrigue involved in a Bachelor or Bachelorette finding love in the first week of the show and never really considering other options.

“The big worry was ‘Oh my god, Dale’s going to go wire to wire,'” Mills said. “Andi [Dorfman]’s season that was a little bit of a problem. It was really always going to be Josh [Murray]. And JoJo [Fletcher] is going to be on later in the season … and she talks a little bit about it too, she kind of knew night one it was going to be Jordan [Rodgers].”

But both Andi and JoJo at least entertained the thought of pursuing relationships with the other contestants, which at least kept their seasons tenable. Mills said that it quickly became apparent that wasn’t the case with Clare.

READ NEXT: Clare Crawley Rejects Contestant & Is a No-Show on Solo Dinner Date

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