Not messing around! Katie Thurston took her job handing out roses very seriously, a source exclusively tells Us Weekly.
“Katie was in control and made sure the men she wanted were there and the men she wasn’t interested in, she sent packing,” the source tells Us, adding that filming season 17 “went great and it wrapped a week ahead of schedule.”
The Bachelor season 25 contestant left to film her journey to find love in New Mexico in March and wrapped on Saturday, April 24. Instead of Chris Harrison, former Bachelorettes Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe were called in to help Katie find The One.
“Tayshia and Kaitlyn can relate to Katie’s journey in a lot of different ways, which you’ll see play out, so it was nice to have them there to help out with whatever situation came up,” the insider says. “Tayshia had fun and loved doing it. She and Katilyn made a great team.”
While ABC has yet to announce Harrison’s future with the franchise, the insider adds that Adams, for her part, is interested in hosting again. The Perfect Letter author, meanwhile, announced he was taking a step back from the series in February after he came under fire for his defense of Rachael Kirkconnell’s past racially insensitive actions.
Following the news that Harrison, 49, wouldn’t be hosting Matt James’ After the Final Rose, the network announced he wouldn’t be part of season 17 of The Bachelorette either. The TV personality subsequently hired high-power lawyer Bryan J. Freedman, the same attorney Gabrielle Union enlisted when she was let go from America’s Got Talent. According to the insiders, some members of the crew expect and want Harrison to return, but they don’t know anything for sure.
“There were a lot of very last-minute changes,” a second source told Us earlier this month. “It’s a different vibe. Chris was the glue that holds it together. He’s like the father figure to everybody. He’s someone everybody knows and respects and truly loves.”
A third source added that it took time for Adams and Bristowe to adjust. “Tayshia and Kaitlyn have had to learn how to cohost and it’s taken time,” the insider said, noting that it was made very clear that the women weren’t “replacing” Harrison. “They’re lovely to work with and they get along with the crew. It’s just completely different with them cohosting.”
Season 17 of The Bachelorette begins on ABC Monday, June 7, at 8 p.m. ET.