Matt James’ ‘Bachelor’ Schedule Finally Brings Some Normalcy To The Fandom

After a strange year for Bachelor Nation (and the world, tbh), things are finally starting to look a little more normal, at least by way of the franchise. After filming delays due to the coronavirus pandemic caused a change in location and timeline for Season 16 of The Bachelorette, Matt James’ Bachelor schedule appears to get things back on track. Luckily for fans, a deep dive proves 2021 might bring a full year of Bach content back to viewers’ screens.

According to Variety, Matt went into quarantine in September and filming officially began in October. Traditionally, a season is filmed for about two months. With Matt’s return to social media just before Thanksgiving, it looks like production was on its usual schedule. So! With a premiere date at the start of January (just like past Bachelor seasons, including Season 24 with Peter), it appears things are pretty much back to normal — at least timing-wise — in the world of The Bachelor. Which means fans could expect a finale sometime around the start of March.

That leaves a whole lotta year left for Bach content. Looking at the traditional timeline, a Bachelorette premiere would typically happen sometime in May and a Bachelor in Paradise premiere in August.

As of Jan. 5 it’s unclear whether or not The Bachelorette and BIP will return in 2021, but the smoothness of Matt’s season is promising. While some protocols have changed due to the pandemic (like the filming locations and lack of international travel), by now it appears the producers know how to pull off a COVID-conscious season.

And while Season 25 looks much more similar to past ones, choosing Matt as the lead was a bit unorthodox. The fan fave was known amongst Bachelor Nation due to his friendship with former contestant Tyler Cameron and then as a cast member on Clare Crawley’s season. Prior to reporting for Clare’s season, however, the producers changed their minds and asked Matt to be the Season 25 lead.

Normally, the lead of a season was a prior contestant (giving them insight on the process), but Matt headed into the experience as a total newbie. Despite not being versed in the world of Bachelor filming, it’s clear Matt’s up to the challenge. His premiere on Jan. 4 showcased his good-humor, personal values, and desire to find a lifelong partner. Fans will just have to wait what’s in store for him — and for the franchise — as 2021 unfolds.

Season 25 of The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

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