Having previously interviewd Chris Harrison, I was excited to interview him again about The Bachelor Winter Games because he is an open book. During out interview he shared how The Bachelor Winter Olympics came to be, whether or not you will see him as “The Bachelor, Keeping in touch with past contestants and so much more. He even shared some information about Ben and Lauren’s break up. It was a fun interview!!!
Here are 14 Fun Facts he shared during our interview…
- When they came up with the idea for The Bachelor Winter Games, they had no clue what they were getting themselves into.
“When we started Bachelor Winter Games, we had no clue about what we getting ourselves into and what we were gonna do. We had this concept and it was very loose and it was fun for us because we’ve been doing the Bachelor and Bachelorette for 16 years, which I love and it’s my baby but if you’ve seen the show, we’ve been doing it for awhile, we got it down, we know what we’re doing…with Winter Games, there was nothing, there was no concept. There was no idea…so it was fun for us after 16 years to completely come up with a brand new Show.”
- The show’s initial goal was to create a global celebration of love.
Honestly, we had this idea of our goal…Let’s make this Global Celebration of Love. Let’s define that and figure out what that means. And so what we figured out was, The Bachelor is a phenomenon here obviously in the United States and it’s one of the biggest franchises in the history of TV, and it has been for almost 2 decades. But it’s actually huge around the world…And so we thought how do we kind of open the door to that?…We kind of decided it would be this pseudo Olympic Village where we’re gonna get the biggest Stars from around the world join the biggest Stars from our Show, bring them together, let them live in one house, let the mayhem ensue. And then for some reason, let’s put these people on Skis cause most of them have never skied…”
- The contestants are given very stringent tests of all kinds (medically, physically and mentally)
“…Everybody goes through very stringent tests of all kinds. Believe it or not, Mental as well. Look, let’s be honest. There are some grey areas but let’s also be honest. If I lock the doors right now, half of this room is crazy. And when I say half, I mean 75%. So it’s really numbers. It’s a numbers game.”
When asked if he was included in that figure, his response was “Oh 100%. I’m driving the bus.”
- You’ll never see Chris Harrison as “The Bachelor”
“I am a Bachelor, even The Bachelor. I’m so bad at it at my normal private life, I can’t imagine putting that on television. It seems like a horrible idea.
In all seriousness, obviously people ask that a lot. I believe in the Show and I believe in Love and I had a wonderful Marriage for many years and I have two great kids and I have this finite amount of time with them before they’re off to College and I produced this Show for so long to be all of a sudden a contestant on it would be really weird. It doesn’t make sense to me because I produce and when I’m hosting, I’m even producing and to be sitting on a date and thinking I know everyone in the room because I’ve worked with these people and raised them 15, 20 years and then on top of that, I’m worried about the lighting, and if we’re getting good content and where the scene’s going, and how do we end it. And I’m like, this is not a good way to find love.”
- Although it is natural to want to step in and say something, he doesn’t (and yes that is difficult for him).
“…. It’s hard and I think one of my gifts as a host and as I’ve learned over the years, one of the hardest things I do is not speak, and not jump in. And that’s a hard thing to do especially on television because everyone has this need to fill dead space because dead space is awkward but sometimes, it’s really needed and because that person wants to speak or they want to emote some emotional whatever it is, and you need to allow that to happen and if you fix it, then they can just bury it or move on. So it’s hard so the toughest things for me, those horribly awkward situations or somebody’s really breaking down is not to fix it. And that’s an odd talent that many of us don’t have because it’s awkward, it’s tough. It’s even tougher on the Host or whoever is doing the interviewing as it is on the person breaking down.”
- Ashley is a crier but Chris loves that about her because what you see is what you get.
“That’s why I love Ashley. What you see is what you get. I’ve been around her on camera (and off) obviously now for years and I always love and respect people who just own who they are. No matter what that is. We’re all different shapes, sizes and whatever, backgrounds, and we all bring something different to the table. And as long as you own that and you are who you are, I respect that, like I get it. And that’s Ashley. I’ll be talking to her at a concert and she’ll be talking about whatever and suddenly, she’ll start crying. By the way sometimes she’s laughing hysterically and it turns into crying. And she’s happy and she cries and it’s her.”
- Chris is familiar with the show “Unreal” and finds it flattering.
“I’ll be honest. Obviously, I’m familiar with the show and honestly, it’s flattering. People ask a lot of times what I think about it. I’ve never watched it. I don’t know the series. I watched one episode because I was on the Red Carpet about to interview Constance who’s this great Actress, who’s on the Show, and so I needed to prepare. So I watched an episode to get ready for that. So I don’t know the storylines. I don’t know what they do. I’m very flattered about the Show, when people talk about all these Shows, whether it’s Burn With Love, Unreal, or even this weekend on SNL, they did a great skit, like that’s amazing, you have to be a part of the lexicon of Society and what’s going on and part of the vernacular here to be made of because if you’re making fun of something, people usually know what that is. So it really is an honor to be, and to think about all those Actors, Writers, Craft Service. All those people have jobs because of our silly Show. And that’s a great thing…”
- He does maintain friendships with people who have been on the show.
“I do. A lot of them. Whether intended or not, I run into a lot of them, like I was at a concert last Monday and ran into Kristina Schulman and just ran into Graham Bunn who’s a DJ here in town. But a lot of them are my friends whether even back in the day, it’s Trista and Ryan are dear friends of mine, and Andrew Firestone is one of my closest friends. Bob Guiney, and even now Ben Higgins and I talk all the time, Kaitlyn and JoJo.
Yeah, one of the weirdest things about this job is I’ve had 16 years of these people that have come into my life and that I’ve taken care of. I’ve married some of them and watched them have babies and created these families with them and on the off-camera side, we’ve had deaths and divorces and love affairs and marriages. We’ve kind of done it all and that’s not even the Television Show. And so yeah, we’re kind of a traveling band of Gypsies in this family that’s kind of stuck together, which is pretty special. It’s neat. I have some really good friends because of this Show.”
- Chris has played matchmaker but he hasn’t thought about putting people together from different seasons.
“I’ve played Matchmaker to people but I never thought you should meet this person from Season One or Season Two. I’ve never crossed Shows. They do that on their own…”
- Bachelor in Paradise (the summer show) actually came about because past bachelors and bachlorettes would go on reunions.
“…that’s kind of where Bachelor in Paradise came from, the Summer Show because the Show is Bachelors and Bachelorettes would go on these reunions on their own and we thought, that’s fantastic. Let’s put that on television. So we created Bachelor in Paradise and that’s what it was, the best of the best coming together. And it’s not always even Fan Favorites. A lot of it are personal favorites of ours that someone that got overlooked, someone that we thought was really special that didn’t get the recognition and they were just following one person they didn’t clique with and so they never got that shot. And so we thought, let’s bring them back and give them another shot so it’s fun to cast those Shows because you’re kind of creating couples playing Matchmaker as you’re heading into it.”
- Chris shared some insight into the breakup between Ben and Lauren and how it affected Ben.
“…He and I have had a lot of long talks about this. I know he’s been struggling. He loved her, adored her, he felt a failure in the breakup. He was ashamed and I know people don’t look at that like come on, it’s a stupid TV Show but it’s not. It was his life…He’ll never speak ill of Lauren. He’ll never talk about what caused the break up, what it was. And by the way, vice versa. I’ve never heard her say a cross word about Ben…He was all in. And I know, trust me. Maybe I can empathize more since my Divorce, that was 6, 7 years ago. But still, I think I got to learn that love and respect this Show and empathize with it more as a Host after my Divorce”
- You will actually hear Chris speak Japanese in one of the episodes as he is trying to communicate with Yuki, a contestant from The Bachelor in Japan.
“…I’m gonna give you guys the biggest Spoiler in probably the history of my career. I had a very dramatic, sincere talk with Yuki in Japanese. It was the greatest achievement of my career…I don’t think I sucked completely. For a kid from Texas, I think I did OK. She seemed to understand but you really don’t know cause a lot of times she’s just nice and she shakes her head.”
- The Bachelor Winter Games is probably one of his favorite shows he’s produced.
“I mean, I hate to say this out loud to people that are only gonna write this but Bachelor Winter Games may be some of my favorite television we have ever produced. It’s that good…it’s phenomenal how well it turned out and it was exciting. It was fun for us to be just really producing on the fly, coming up with great ideas and you see this stuff work and the concept worked. And so it was phenomenal and so I’m excited. Hey look, the Bachelor and Bachelorette always gonna be my baby. It’s changed my life on many levels so that’ll always be my favorite but this was really fun and I haven’t had this much fun in a long time.”
- He prides himself on being the same in person as you see on TV.
“I think if you’ll get to know me, you’ll know that I guess I’m the same guy that’s on The Bachelor. That’s how I live my life. That’s how I host Shows and that’s how I treat the people on the Show. And I treat them with love, respect, dignity until you cross me and then I’ll end you. They’re like my Children…”
Sneak Peek clips from The Bachelor Winter Games premiere episode
The Rose Ceremony
Find out what will happen on the premiere of The Bachelor Winter Games, Tuesday, Feb 13 at 8|7c on ABC! Also tune in to the 2nd episode on Thursday, 2/15 from 8:00–10:00 p.m. EST
Baby, it’s cold outside when bachelors and bachelorettes from around the world meet in the streets of Manchester, Vermont, for a grand celebration of unity and love. Is love the universal language? Find out as international bachelors and bachelorettes from such countries as Switzerland, Japan and Australia compete and, hopefully, find love with America’s Bachelor Nation favorites. These singles will go head-to-head in winter-themed challenges, including the toughest sport of all – love. Chris Harrison hosts this highly anticipated, four-episode series, complete with the usual dose of tears, drama, romance, and laughter.
Highlights Include Appearances by Bachelor Nation Alumni Ryan and Trista Sutter, Arie Luyendyk Jr., Rachel Lindsay and JoJo Fletcher; Figure Skating Champions Nancy Kerrigan, Tai Babilonia and Randy Gardner; ESPN’s Hannah Storm and KABC’s Ashley Brewer; and a Performance by Country Singer/Songwriter Ruthie Collins.