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Chrishell Stause Was in Talks to Be the Bachelorette Over 10 Years Ago, ABC Exec Robert Mills Reveals

Chrishell Stause may be one of the most talked-about reality stars of 2020, but she nearly handed out roses over a decade ago. ABC executive Robert Mills revealed he met with the Selling Sunset star years before she married Justin Hartley.

Related: Every Time ‘The Bachelor’ Shocked Fans With Its Lead

“She would never remember this. I’ve actually had lunch with Chrishell, this was about 10 or 11 years ago, to talk about being the Bachelorette,” Mills told Nick Viall on his “Viall Files” podcast on Tuesday, October 27, noting that ABC wasn’t regularly producing seasons of The Bachelorette at the time.

Chrishell Stause Was Almost the Bachelorette 10 Years Ago, ABC Exec Reveals

He explained, “There was like four Bachelors for every one Bachelorette. … At that point we didn’t know who it was going to be, so we were looking for people and our casting director said, ‘We should meet with this girl Chrishell Stause, she’s amazing.’”

Related: Chrishell Stause's Evolution

Mills recalled meeting with the “awesome” soap star, who was on All My Children at the time, at the Beverly Hills Hotel.

“I was convinced, I was like, ‘This is the Bachelorette,’” he said. “Then Brad Womack’s season aired and that’s when he let go of both girls and one of them was DeAnna.”

According to Mills, even Ellen DeGeneres rallied around DeAnna Pappas after she got her heartbroken by Womack on season 11 of The Bachelor, which aired in 2007.

“This was before we even said we were going to do a Bachelorette. At that point, it was like, ‘How do we not do that?’” Mills said of Pappas. “And the whole thing of what could have happened. … Chrishell could have been the Bachelorette and then we wouldn’t have had DeAnna and then we wouldn’t have thought to have Jason Mesnick. Nick, where would you be right now?”

Viall, who was the season 21 Bachelor after appearing on seasons 10 and 11 of The Bachelorette, referred to the situation as the “butterfly effect.”

He said, “I might not be the Bachelor. … [I’d be in Wisconsin] selling software, being some sort of mid-level manager.”

Related: Former ‘Bachelor’ and ‘Bachelorette’ Leads: Where Are They Now?

After Viall shared the podcast episode, Stause reposted the clip of Mills talking about her.

“[Behind-the-scenes] scoop,” she wrote. In the comments section of Us Weekly‘s Instagram, Stause added, “Of course I remember [this lunch]! So funny to think about now. 🌹”

While she didn’t find love on TV, Stause married Hartley in 2017. News broke in November 2019, however, that the twosome called it quits after two years of marriage. Viewers watched their divorce play out on season 3 of Netflix’s Selling Sunset, which Stause has been part of since the 2019 premiere. She is currently competing on Dancing With the Stars.

Pappas, for her part, was indeed named the season 4 Bachelorette. While she got engaged to Jesse Csincsak during the 2008 finale, they split later that year. She went on to marry Stephen Stagliano, whose twin brother, Michael Stagliano, competed on season 5 of The Bachelorette.

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