Hours before Monday night's episode of "The Bachelor," reports surfaced that ABC was poised to announce its next Bachelorette -- and it was going to happen much earlier than usual.
Not only that, but the reports claimed that the lucky lady was a "historic" choice. And when Chris Harrison appeared on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" on Monday night, those rumors were confirmed.
ABC has cast Rachel Lindsay as its next Bachelorette, it was revealed on the late-night show. She's the first black lead in the history of the popular franchise, which has run for 33 seasons.
Watch the reveal below:
Lindsay is a contestant on Nick Viall's current season of "The Bachelor," and she's actually still seemingly in contention for his heart with just three other women remaining after last night's episode. Though, clearly, things don't work out.
"This is a bit of a spoiler," Kimmel remarked to Lindsay. "You're still on the show."
"Yes, it is, but you know we're a couple weeks out from filming and I'm ready to get this thing started," Lindsay explained. "I'm ready to find love -- my husband!"
See photos of who Rachel Lindsay beat out to snag the title:
"If you know anybody who needs to apply, sign up!" she continued with a smile. "Go ahead and get started!"
The question on everyone's minds, of course, was when was this decided? And why are they announcing it so much earlier in the preceding season than usual? (ABC usually waits until at least the final two -- if not later -- to reveal who will lead their next season.)
"It wasn't that long before I got off the show that I was approached," she revealed. "But I honestly thought they were doing it just to make me feel better from the heartbreak. And then, as it kept going, I actually realized they were serious about this thing."
And, judging by the big smile on her face, the stunning attorney isn't that heartbroken anymore. It's clear that Lindsay has her sights set on the future and is incredibly optimistic about being able to find love on the show.
"I am excited! I'm ready. I'm ready to find love."
"I'm looking for someone who's ready for what I'm ready for," she continued. "At this point in my life, at 31, I'm ready to find a husband, someone who's ready to start a family. Someone who can make me laugh [and has] a great smile."
We can't wait to see what the next season of "The Bachelorette" brings. Great choice, ABC!
See photos of Nick Viall:
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