How much would you pay Chris Harrison to never have to see Chris Harrison again?
Apparently for ABC the answer is $9 million, the amount of money Harrison received as a payout in exchange for his permanent exile from The Bachelor—plus an additional $1 million in what Variety terms “remaining contractual fees.” In all, $10 million.
It’s a nice sum of money for someone forced to resign following accusations of racism. (I must note here that the official line is that Harrison was not fired and decided to “step down” of his own volition.) In case you need a reminder: Harrison met backlash in February after he appeared to be dismissive of concerns that Rachael Kirkconnell—the Bachelor winner on the first season featuring a Black bachelor, Matt James—had attended an antebellum-themed party in 2018. When Rachel Lindsay, the first Black bachelorette, asked Harrison about the incident, he insisted he wasn’t the “woke police” and tried to minimize the significance of the resurfaced photos of Kirkconnell at the party. Harrison apologized, etc.
After Harrison left the franchise, Page Six reported that the longtime host demanded a $25 million payout, which is indeed not unusual for people leaving networks in disgrace. Harrison threatened to spill nearly two decades of the show’s secrets if he didn’t receive it. “He was ready to tell the truth about how things really work over there—and he has plenty of evidence to back him up,” a source told the outlet in March. “Chris was making $5 million a season and wanted $25 million to go.”
So Harrison didn’t get the hefty eight-figure sum he was agitating for, and it is almost certain that he had to sign a non-disclosure agreement to receive his $9 million. In the extremely warped world of the entertainment industry, I suppose this is what some might consider a small form of justice.
Please enjoy this video of the Backstreet Boys doing *NSYNC’s choreography, a taste of what may or may not have taken place when the two groups collaborated to perform as “Back-Sync” in Los Angeles Friday night:
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