Monday, May 02, 2011
ABC Television Network
PRESS RELEASE - PRESS RELEASE - ENTERTAINMENT -
THE BACHELORETTE (5/23) -- SEASON PREMIERE
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SEASON PREMIERE

ASHLEY HEBERT RISKS IT ALL FOR LOVE, GETTING HER SECOND CHANCE AT HAPPINESS, WHEN THE SEVENTH EDITION OF THE HIT ROMANCE REALITY SERIES, "THE BACHELORETTE," PREMIERES MONDAY, MAY 23, ON ABC
This Season's Highlights Include Extraordinary Trips Across Asia, Including Thailand, Hong Kong, Taipei and the Fiji Islands, a Private Concert by Hit Pop Singer Colbie Caillat, a Bachelor Las Vegas Competition Featuring "Jabbawockeez," a Flash Mob Hip Hop Routine and Concert by Far East Movement and the First Bachelorette Roast Ever, Headlined by Roastmaster General Jeffrey Ross

Ashley Hebert couldn't admit she was in love with Brad Womack - and it might have cost her the final rose - but that's all in the past. The energetic and vivacious Ashley, who is ready to start a new life with a soul mate she might soon meet, will get a second chance at love, as the seventh edition of "The Bachelorette," the female version of ABC's hit romance reality series, premieres MONDAY,
MAY 23 (9:00-11:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network.

Ashley, 27, who resides in Philadelphia, where she is finishing her degree in dentistry, went from being one of the favorites to capture Brad's heart on the 15th edition of "The Bachelor" to narrowly missing her goal of finding a future husband. Ashley was frustrated she couldn't communicate her feelings to Brad, and he gallantly let her go before the rose ceremony. Her insecurities got the best of her and she ended up going home full of regrets. Now she's ready to face her fears and put her heart on the line for love. And this time she'll be ready and open to express her feelings to the right guy.

On Monday, May 30, the program moves to its regular time period of 8:00-10:01 p.m., ET.

The premiere, "Episode 701," begins with a huge surprise as Ashley discloses she already knows one of the men, someone a former "Bachelor" cast member has warned her is here for the wrong reasons. Meanwhile, Ashley's old insecurity returns when she reveals to Chris Harrison that she fears the men will be disappointed when they learn she is the Bachelorette. The 25 eligible guys start arriving, eager to make an impression, including a handsome chef who steals a kiss; a Wall St. banker who brings her a pair of ballet tickets; a winery owner who pours her a bottle of her own special vintage, and a former professional baseball player who recites a poem he wrote for her. But nothing tops the mysterious bachelor who steps out of the limo wearing a mask. Finally, the man Ashley has been warned about arrives; though skeptical, she is thrown by his good looks and quiet charm.

Tonight nothing can prepare Ashley for the lengths the guys will go to for her attention:
A successful and upbeat solar energy executive is the first to get alone time with her and manages to calm her fears that the men won't like her. One clever man introduces Ashley to his mother via speakerphone. Another bachelor peaks her curiosity from across the room with a romantic message on giant cue cards. And the masked man makes sure she understands that he wants her to appreciate the person he is inside. Ashley is thrilled when one bachelor begins to serenade her with a guitar, but is startled at the outcome. But the biggest shock might be from the man she initially worried about. Is he as genuine he seems to be?

The tension mounts when Chris brings out the first impression rose and the pressure becomes too much for one man, who to tries to calm his nerves by drinking too much. Will it spoil his chances with the Bachelorette? Ashley has no choice but to take drastic measures. However, she decides to award the first impression rose to a charming bachelor who took a risk during the evening. By the end of the night, Ashley will have 18 men left to compete for her affections and, in the end, her heart.

A list of bachelors will be released tomorrow, May 3.

Ashley's hunt for Mr. Right will take place during some of the most romantic and adventurous dates ever, with exciting surprises in store for her bachelors as they travel around the globe for intimate dates in Hollywood, Las Vegas, Thailand, Hong Kong and the Fiji Islands. Ashley and one lucky man fly to Las Vegas for one of the wildest romantic dates, as they plan a real Vegas wedding day, complete with a romantic dinner floating in the middle of the Bellagio Las Vegas lake. Twelve men show off their best moves to the Bachelorette as they audition for the chance to appear on stage with her in the spectacular Las Vegas dance show, "Jabbawockeez." It all comes down to a coin flip, as Ashley and one man are treated to a private concert by chartbusting pop singer/songwriter Colbie Caillat. One unsuspecting bachelor is stunned by a "flash mob" performing a hip hop routine to a Far East Movement song - and then treated to an actual live concert by the band. Roastmaster General Jeffrey Ross presides over the first-ever Bachelorette Roast, where ten bachelors perform live in front of an audience, but one man steps over the line, taking his roast of Ashley too far.

Traveling half-way around the world, Ashley and her remaining men visit beautiful and exotic Thailand, where they renovate a local orphanage in Phuket during a day of giving back. Moving north to Chiang Mai, it's a whirlwind for the Bachelorette and one special guy, exploring the bustling city, shopping in an outdoor market and visiting an enormous ancient temple. The exciting journey ends for the couple with Thai music, dancers and fire eaters. And there is nothing like eight men attempting to impress Ashley as they compete against each other in the popular sport of Muay Thai boxing, but one overly gung ho man ends up in the local emergency room. Hong Kong, where traditional Chinese customs and the mystique of the East reside side-by-side with contemporary urban life, opens its doors to the Bachelorette and the men. Ashley and one of her suitors head to Kowloon. They spend an exhilarating day together which culminates with them boarding a traditional junk boat for a romantic dinner. And Hong Kong's Stanley Beach is the backdrop for a thrilling dragon boat race between the intensely competitive men. Ashley's glamorous Asian adventure ends with a trip to Taiwan, including a trip to Chiang Kai Shek Square, where the Bachelorette and the men join a group of people doing Tai Chi before exploring the breathtaking Longshan Temple. Finally, three lucky men travel with Ashley to the idyllic Fiji Islands for some of the most exotic and sensual overnight dates ever.

As in the past, men will continue to be eliminated each week, but if at any point along the way a bachelor should decide that he's no longer interested in the Bachelorette, he can reject her invitation to continue dating. Two lucky men will meet her family, and she will visit the final bachelors' hometowns for a slice of their lives in an effort to determine the man with whom she is most compatible -- but there are surprises in store for Ashley that shake her world. At the end of the journey, the Bachelorette may quite possibly have found true love. But the big question is: After all of this, will he pop the question, and will she say yes?

Hosted by Chris Harrison, "The Bachelorette" is a production of Next Entertainment in association with Warner Horizon Television. Mike Fleiss and Martin Hilton are the executive producers. "The Bachelorette" is broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC's selected HDTV format, with stereo sound. A TV parental guideline will be posted closer to airdate.

This episode of "The Bachelorette" will be available on ABC.com the day after airing on the network for users to watch online. Photos of "The Bachelorette" are available at www.abcmedianet.com or 818-460-6611.

ABC Media Relations:     Cathy Rehl (212) 456-6749; cathy.rehl@abc.com
    Yani Chang (818) 460-4705; yani.chang@abc.com