11:23am PT by Christina Schoellkopf
'The Bachelor' Couple "Would Consider" Live TV Wedding
Will The Bachelor star Ben Higgins and his bride-to-be Lauren Bushnell be the next couple to say "I do" on live TV?
On Tuesday, less than 24 hours since the Bachelor sweethearts took their relationship public, the couple told reporters during a conference call that they have not ruled out the option of broadcasting their big moment down the aisle.
"We haven’t ruled anything out," said Bushnell. "All of the support from everyone has been so amazing that it would be something that both of us would consider I think moving forward, depending on what opportunities come to share our life with everyone around us who's been supportive. And that includes Bachelor Nation. So, it's not ruled out, but it also, we don't know what opportunities are going to present themselves, all we know is we want to get married and we want a wedding and we want our family and friends there. So, how that comes about, I'm not exactly sure. But we're excited."
The stars of the ABC reality dating series have already shared an intimate moment on live TV. Shortly after the 20th Bachelor season finale wrapped Monday, Higgins re-proposed to Bushnell during the After the Final Rose live TV special.
The Higgins TV wedding would come as broadcast networks continue to push the envelope with live programming in a bid to draw live viewers in an increasingly competitive DVR landscape. NBC and Fox, for example, have found ratings and critical success with live musicals including The Wiz Live and Grease Live. As live TV viewership continues to dwindle, live programming events like awards shows and sports have become increasingly valuable.
The wedding would mark the second time ABC has had a couple exchange vows live on the air. The franchise broadcast TV's first live wedding in January 2014 when season 17's Bachelor Sean Lowe and his winner Catherine Giudici made history by saying "I do" during a special telecast. A handful of the franchise's alums have gone on to get married in televised ABC wedding specials — Trista Rehn and Ryan Sutter; Ashley Hebert and J.P. Rosenbaum; and Jason Mesnick and Molly Malaney — though they weren't live.
Higgins and Bushnell also used Tuesday's press call to address Bachelor runner-up JoJo taking the reins as ABC's next Bachelorette — specifically if choosing JoJo fits the diverse casting that fans have been asking for — but they kept their responses short. "[JoJo] deserves it. I think it will be an interesting experience for Lauren and I to watch on our couch," said Higgins. "How they decide who the Bachelorette is is not up to me. Honestly, I did not know even I was in consideration to be the Bachelor until a phone call."