Matt James‘ season of The Bachelor left off on a very emotional note. While Matt and his season pick Rachael Kirkconnell left Nemacolin Resort as a happy couple, the After the Final Rose special was almost hard to watch.
As Emmanuel Acho sat in for host Chris Harrison on AFTR, viewers watched as both Rachael and Michelle Young, Matt’s “runner-up,” discussed their respective relationships with Matt, and reflected on the season as a whole. Fans were quick to realize, however, that the third woman that rounded out Matt’s top three was not part of the show.
Reality Steve revealed that it took six hours to film the After the Final Rose special, which was pre-taped due to COVID-19. However, the final cut, after hitting the editing floor, was only one hour’s worth of television — minus commercials. So, was there more that viewers actually missed? Absolutely.
Producers made the decision to keep the focus of the after show on Matt and Rachael, giving Michelle a few minutes before diving into what’s transpired since the show wrapped.
Here’s what you need to know:
Bri Springs Was at the ‘After the Final Rose’ Taping, but She Was Cut in Editing
Many Bachelor fans were looking forward to seeing Bri during After the Final Rose, but she didn’t get any air time. Interestingly, Bri was at the taping, but she didn’t get her chance to sit down with Matt and talk things out.
“I didn’t talk to Matt and didn’t talk to Rachael and Michelle [at After the Final Rose]. I didn’t talk to the women until after the fact,” Bri told Us Weekly. She went on to say that she feels as though she received the closure that she needed, despite not getting time to really work that out with Matt.
“Watching it back, as odd as it sounds, really did give me the closure that I needed. And watching the entire season back, I was able to see I think all of us were able to see where Matt’s heart was the entire time. So for me, I was able to walk away from it looking at my experience, my journey for what it was, and my conversation with Emmanuel did give me the closure that I needed from just this kind of entire experience. I was able to wrap a bow around it and say, ‘We did that and now we can move forward,” she told the outlet.
Bri did get her chance to sit down with Emmanuel Acho, however, and she opened up about her decision to leave her job to do the show. She also talked about the controversy surrounding the show and how she feels about things moving forward. All of that, however, never made it on the air.
“[You missed] what it was like for me to make such a big life-altering decision, how my mom and my best friend kind of took part in helping me get there to that conclusion. And lastly, just the closure that I needed from all of this watching back my breakup. I really feel like it was a great conversation that Emmanuel and I had and just looking at where the show could go from here,” she said.
Rachael Kirkconnell & Michelle Young Talked During the Taping
For the first time in After the Final Rose history, the final two women came face-to-face, sitting together on the couch across from the host to talk. Rachael and Michelle did just that, and had a really great conversation that was never aired.
After the finale was said and done, Emmanuel Acho took to his Instagram account to share his thoughts about the conversation, which he calls his “favorite part” from ATFR.
“It wasn’t planned nor in the script, but I figured they’re both in the building why not talk it out face to face, plus when I see an opportunity for reconciliation I take it. Thankfully, Rachael was willing, and Michelle hadn’t left yet, so we brought the two out to talk it out,” he shared.
Emmanuel called the conversation a “beautiful depiction,” and he seemed really bummed out that it was cut from the final edit.