‘Bachelor’ Matt James says he felt pressure to choose a black contestant after Rachel Lindsay criticism

Matt James felt the weight of his role as the first black man to star The Bachelor. On Thursday, James appeared on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen where the host asked if he felt pressure on who he would choose in the final episode.

“I’ve talked to Rachel Lindsay a lot about her time on the show and her experience,” Cohen said, referring to the first Black Bachelorette, who ultimately chose Bryan Abasolo to be her fiancé and now husband. “I wonder if you can tell me a little about the pressure on you to pick a black girl at the end of the season.”

“It was definitely a lot of pressure that I put on initially,” admitted James. “When I got there, being the first Black Bachelor, people will look to you for a lot of different things and every time I felt that pressure, I just thought back to how I was raised and what I was looking for and a lot of those qualities have nothing to do with it. do with the race and are in your heart. ”

James went on to list some of the things he was looking for, saying, “Do you worry? Are you compassionate? Thank God the cast was so diverse and that made up a lot of what I was looking for and that made my decision a lot. easier with that quality of woman there. “

He added that although he never appeared in High school, executives were able to choose a pool of contestants for their season that reflected the values ​​that were important to them.

“They did a great job,” he said of casting for his season. “Overall, I saw what he was looking for. As the season goes on, it’s very evident that they did their job and did their part to make sure everything was represented.”

ET recently spoke with Tyler Cameron, James’s good friend and former Bachelorette party contestant. Although Cameron did not speak about the current state of James’ relationship, he said: “I was with him this weekend and we talked about things. He seems like he’s in a great place and that’s all that matters. As long as he’s happy, I’m happy.”


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