LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Chris Harrison’s exit from “The Bachelor” franchise will be permanent.
ABC Entertainment and Warner Horizon confirmed Tuesday in a statement obtained by multiple news outlets, like Variety and NBC News, that Harrison won’t return as host of the long-running reality dating show.
“Chris Harrison is stepping aside as host of The Bachelor franchise. We are thankful for his many contributions over the past 20 years and wish him all the best on his new journey,” the statement reportedly reads.
Harrison also confirmed his departure in an Instagram post.
“I’ve had a truly incredible run as host of The Bachelor franchise and now I’m excited to start a new chapter,” he wrote. “I’m so grateful to Bachelor Nation for all of the memories we’ve made together. While my two-decade journey is wrapping up, the friendships I’ve made will last a lifetime.”
Harrison served as host of “The Bachelor” since the show began airing on ABC in 2002. He also hosted the show’s spinoffs, like “The Bachelorette” and “Bachelor in Paradise.”
Harrison stepped away from his hosting duties in February and apologized for defending the actions of a contestant that many consider offensive.
Harrison came under fire after an interview on “Extra” when he was asked about racially insensitive past behavior from “Bachelor” contestant Rachael Kirkconnell, who ended up receiving the final rose in her season.
Past photos of Kirkconnell resurfaced in which she is dressed in a costume at an antebellum plantation-themed fraternity formal in 2018.
“By excusing historical racism, I defended it. I invoked the term ‘woke police,’ which is unacceptable. I am ashamed over how uninformed I was. I was so wrong,” Harrison wrote on Instagram, apologizing for defending Kirkconnell.
Harrison’s permanent departure comes a day after the season premiere of “The Bachelorette,” which is being hosted by former contestants Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe.