Does Ben Higgins have a chance at beating out Blake Horstmann to become ‘The Bachelor’ again? An ABC producer spills!
Ben Higgins, 29, may be the second person to ever star in two seasons of The Bachelor, following Brad Womack’s previous two stints. But Blake Horstmann, 28, fresh off his heartbreak as Becca Kufrin’s runner-up in The Bachelorette season finale on Aug. 6, may be the more obvious choice to be The Bachelor‘s Season 23 lead. So, what man stands a better chance at the hands of ABC’s casting team? It turns out the choice isn’t that obvious. “It’s probably one of the bigger pools we’ve ever had, I think there’s probably six serious contenders,” ABC executive Rob Mills admitted to E! News on Aug. 7, and added he’s never seen a casting “where everybody is all over the place.” Two other “serious” contenders the executive mentioned were Peter Kraus, 33, and Colton Underwood, 26.
Despite “every name under the sun” being suggested, it turns out Ben’s name is guaranteed to always be a potential Bachelor! “I think Ben Higgins is always somebody who we would consider,” Mills revealed. “As long as the timing is right for him and for us too, but if he’s ready…obviously everybody wants to see Ben happy and finding love.” And that we do. Ben experienced a heartbreaking split in May 2017 with Lauren Bushnell, 28, whom he got engaged to in the Season 20 The Bachelor finale in 2016. We assume Ben hasn’t completely gotten over the breakup, seeing as how he left the Bachelor Winter Games in February with no new lover in tow from the Vermont resort. We think that definitely calls for ABC to set up Ben with a new soulmate ASAP. Bachelor Winter Games host Chris Harrison agrees! “I still want him to find somebody, if that means coming back as the Bachelor,” Chris told E! News. “I don’t know, but he’s still my project.”
But Ben may be considered more seriously over Blake, after the ABC executive voiced his concerns over him making the switch from the Bachelorette to The Bachelor. “There’s no doubt [Blake’s] got the sincerity, he really cares,” Mills said, but added, “The hardest turn that a lead has to make is then getting the empathy toward, ‘Oh my god, now I know what this person went through.’ And for him to have to say, ‘Now I know what Becca went through,’ and break someone’s heart…you just want to make sure he can handle that because I think he is a guy that loves deeply and there’s a potential to fall in love with not even two women, but three or four, which would make for great TV.”
Aww! So it turns out Blake may have too much empathy, a problem when you’re trying to rendezvous with almost 30 contestants to find your one true love. “But you will definitely want to do right by him as well,” the executive went on. “That would probably be the big thing, but he certainly has a lot of the attributes you love seeing in Bachelor.”
HollywoodLife has reached out to Ben Higgins’ rep for a comment.