There’s a grim new reality for ABC’s Bachelor in Paradise.
Production on the reality series was abruptly shut down Sunday over “allegations of misconduct” of a sexual nature between two intoxicated cast members on the show’s Mexico set—and industry watchers are telling The Hollywood Reporter that the scandal likely will spell doom for the show.
Given that there are allegations surfacing that the incident involves a sexual assault on a woman who was reportedly too drunk to give consent, there is also the possibility of criminal charges.
An investigation into the incident on the Bachelor spinoff is ongoing, but it’s all but certain that the fourth season of the show won’t start on Aug. 8, as previously scheduled.
ABC and producer Warner Horizon Television won’t make a decision about cancellation until after the probe is complete. But it may already be too late to save the brand.
“The real question is if the advertisers will stay with the show and how much financial damage has been done,” media valuation expert Larry Gerbrandt told The Hollywood Reporter. “If advertisers stay with the show, then it goes back on the air; but if they turn away in disgust, then you have real problems.”
Host Chris Harrison urged fans to be patient until the facts are determined in the investigation.
On Tuesday, a petition was launched by Care2 demanding that the network cancel the show.
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