Channel 10 Defends Casting Three White Men For The Bachelors Australia
In case you missed it, this year’s season of The Bachelor Australia will have not one, but three Bachelors — and the announcement caused quite a stir. Fans of the franchise criticised the “lack of diversity” after the network chose three white, cisgender men to front the series.
Felix Von Hofe, Thomas Malucelli and Jed McIntosh are this year’s Bachelors and while Channel 10 hailed it as groundbreaking, fans and even former stars of the show have come forward to express their disappointment.
One of them was former Bachelorette Angie Kent, who wrote in a column for Yahoo Australia that it “makes [her] really sad” to see representation done right on The Bachelorette, only to see The Bachelor take 10 steps backward.
“Last year we had our first-ever queer Indigenous bachelorette [Brooke Blurton] with ratings at an all-time low… Jimmy [Nicholson’s] season [of The Bachelor] has also hit rock bottom,” she wrote.
“It really makes me sad to think that as a nation, do we really need to get rid of this diversity for the average gamer to tune in? The proof seems to be in the pudding, and by pudding I mean ratings.”
“Why is there not one person of colour?” she asked. “I’m hoping at least one of them is bisexual. I’m just hoping that there’s something going on here.”
Network Ten has stood by its decision to cast the trio, and said that viewers will see more representation once the full cast for the season is revealed.
Speaking to TV Tonight, Executive Vice President and Chief Content Officer, Paramount Australia and New Zealand Beverley McGarvey said: “Diversity looks at many things, and even to cast the way that it’s been cast, those guys don’t necessarily all print like your typical Bachelor of years gone by.
“There’s a whole significant portion of that cast still to come, which will make people probably slightly rethink their position.”
She continued, “It’s about cast and crew in representation and we do feel that it matters, and we’ve demonstrated that clearly with all of our casting choices.”
McGarvey went on to say that filming has begun in Queensland and the decision to cast three male leads was to explore a different audience.
“This year, we were trying to do something different with Bachelor, even just in terms of the age range, which allows us to cast different types of women as well.
“We’re just going to stay quiet on that and then once people see the entire cast, then they will see that the entire cast is very representative of the Australian population.”
The Bachelors Australia premieres this year on Channel 10 and 10Play.