Emmanuel Acho will be hosting The Bachelor: After The Final Rose special on March 15 in place of longtime host Chris Harrison. The 30-year-old was confirmed as the new host by ABC on Feb. 27 just two weeks after Chris confirmed he would be “stepping aside for a period of time” following a racism scandal involving his comments about season 25 contestant Rachael Kirkconnell. After photos went viral of Rachael attending an Old South-themed party in college, Chris attempted to minimize the backlash in an interview with former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay on Extra. Chris has since apologized and will not be hosting the next season of The Bachelorette.
Emmanuel will be interviewing current Bachelor Matt James as well as the final three women, Bri Springs, Michelle Young, and Rachael during the one-hour special following the finale. “It’s both an honor and privilege to be hosting After the Final Rose. This is an incredibly pivotal episode on one of the most storied shows in television history,” Emmanuel said in a statement. HollywoodLife has rounded up 5 key facts to know about Emmanuel.
1. Emmanuel is from Texas.
Emmanuel was born on November 10, 1990 in Dallas, Texas. His parents, Dr. Sonny and Christie Acho were immigrants from from Isuikwuato, Nigeria, and have three other children. His father Sonny, who is a mental health professional, was also a pastor at the Living Hope Bible Fellowship Church. Emmanuel attended St. Mark’s School where he began playing football, later enrolling at the University of Texas.
2. He played in the NFL.
After playing football in both high school and college, Emmanuel was drafted by the NFL in 2012. He first joined the Cleveland Browns and was later traded to the Philadelphia Eagles in 2013. After being released that same year, he signed was signed to the New York Giants practice squad before once again returning to the Eagles in 2015. He became a free agent in 2015.
3. He has a popular YouTube series
Outside of football, Emmanuel rose to prominence as a best-selling author in 2020 after releasing Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man. The book was also a launching pad for his popular YouTube series of the same name where he addresses the topic of race in America. He describes his series as “a safe place to have the uncomfortable conversations about race that many people have never been able to have.”
“Like you and so many other Black and Brown brothers and sisters, I was grieving,” he said after the death of George Floyd, which also inspired the series. “I didn’t know if I should scream, if I should cry, if I should weep. But I said, ‘You know, Emmanuel, I cannot continue to be frustrated and complain about something unless I’m trying to provide us some solution,” he also said. He was also a guest on Oprah Winfrey’s Apple TV+ series The Oprah Conversation.
4. Rachel Lindsay suggested him as the ‘ATFR’ host.
Just days before ABC named Emmanuel as the host of the upcoming After The Final Rose special, Bachelorette alum Rachel Lindsay suggested he would be a strong choice. “For ATFR, [my husband] Bryan [Abasolo] and I both talked about this — we think Emmanuel Acho would be fantastic,” she said to People magazine on Feb. 24. “[He’s] very outspoken about racial injustice, for social justice, and has pretty much been the person who said, ‘I can have these uncomfortable conversations, and people trust it.’ Who better to lead it? [He’s] someone who’s not involved with the franchise, no ties, no bias — I think it’d be great.”
5. He dated Yvonne Orji
Emmanuel began dating Insecure actress Yvonne Orji, 35, in 2018. The couple attended several events together — including a premiere for Night School — before calling it quits in 2019. “I am newly single,” she said on social media shortly after the break-up, later confirming the pair were never intimate due to her strong religious beliefs.