Nick Viall, a two-time runner-up on “The Bachelorette,” has been named the next star of ABC’s “The Bachelor.”
Mike Fleiss, creator of the dating-competition franchise, announced the choice Tuesday night, tweeting, “Your new #Bachelor is @viallnicholas28.” Viall himself tweeted Wednesday morning, “Wow! Couldn’t be more Excited!! Still a bit nervous. It’s going to be a wild ride. Thank you all for your support!!”
Viall, whose LinkedIn account lists him as an account executive with the Chicago area’s SalesForce.com, currently appears on season 3 of the spinoff reality show “Bachelor in Paradise,” where he and fellow franchise star Jen Saviano have been a couple. He came in second to Josh Murray on Andi Dorfman’s season 10 of “The Bachelorette” in 2014, and to Shawn Booth on Kaitlyn Bristowe’s season the following year.
“So many names get thrown around and at the end of the day, as producers, we have to try and think and decide what’s best for the franchise and who is the most deserving and sincere person,” host and producer Chris Harrison told People magazine Wednesday. “At the end of the day, we all looked around the table and nobody could say it wasn’t Nick. . . . The previous two times he was on ‘The Bachelorette,’ he fell in love and he had his heart broken. So he is that guy that will go there.”
Harrison said Viall “wasn’t actively campaigning for it. He wasn’t begging for it,” and explained that, “The good thing is, with our casting, there’s no rules. There’s no rules that say we can’t use somebody that’s been on the show or hasn’t been on the show or whatever.”
No airdate was announced for the new season of the ABC show, which returns in January.
The 35-year-old Viall was raised in the Milwaukee suburb of Waukesha, where he graduated from Waukesha North High School in 1999. That year he won the state championship in the 800-meter run at the WIAA Track and Field Championship. He then served as team captain for the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee track team. He is second oldest of 11 children.
In January, he was among the “Bachelor”-franchise alumni who attended the wedding of Jade Roper and Tanner Tolbert, who became engaged on the “Bachelor in Paradise” season 2 finale last year.