Kaitlyn Bristowe is hopeful about what Matt James being cast as the next Bachelor means for the franchise! In an exclusive interview with Entertainment Tonight, Bristowe and her boyfriend, Jason Tartick, opened up about what they think of the casting choice.

"I think the whole world is going to shift, and I think The Bachelor will be part of that shift," Bristowe told Entertainment Tonight's Lauren Zima. She then mentioned how she and Tartick had hoped for James to become the next Bachelor lead months before the big announcement was made.

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Tartick on future Bachelor Matt James: "he was so down to earth"

Tartick revealed that he had gotten to know James through his best friend, Tyler Cameron, and was "super excited" when James was cast on Clare Crawley's season of The Bachelorette. 

"I did have lunch with [James and Cameron], and when I met with them, you could just tell when someone's energy, if they're arrogant or not, he was so down to earth, a good guy, smiling, bubbly," Tartick told Entertainment Tonight about the future Bachelor.

"The whole conversation, he never brought it back to himself, it was always about me asking questions... I just loved his energy. I think it's gonna be a phenomenal season, and honestly, it's really about damn time." 

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James being announced as next Bachelor prompts call for diversity

James' casting announcement has generally gone over well, yet some people— including attorney Rachel Lindsay— feel that more can be done when it comes to the show's diversity. As Entertainment Tonight shares, Lindsay called for the franchise to hire more producers of colour, and while she did congratulate James, she had mixed feelings.

"It feels like a knee-jerk reaction and a result of societal pressure," she tweeted on Friday. "This announcement, without any further commitments regarding diversity, sweepingly brushes deeper issues under the rug." The show's producers subsequently addressed her concerns, vowing to make "significant changes" moving forward.

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Bristowe doesn't think James' casting is "gonna be a Band-Aid"

Bristowe said that overall, she's optimistic about James being the next Bachelor. "When something affects you personally, you're going to be more outspoken on it," she said. "Rachel is in the situation where she's like, 'I'm sick of talking about this, I've said this to the Bachelor world for so long."

"It has affected me, it affects other people.' ... It's kind of like they felt like, 'Let's do this grand gesture to put it out there right now, and just so the world knows.'" Still, Bristowe thinks the casting decision is meaningful.

"But I don't believe it's gonna be a Band-Aid," she said. "I know that's her concern, because she's probably seen it before and heard them say things, but I truly believe that this is different."

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Tartick on diversity in the Bachelor franchise: "Let's see it all"

Tartick then jumped in, voicing his own thoughts on Bristowe and Lindsay's comments. "Should this have been done many, many, many years ago? Absolutely, without question," he said. "The good news is it's being done, and I completely agree with some of the stuff that Rachel said and Kaitlyn said."

"Let's see the change and let's see it go past just having a black Bachelor. Let's see some great [interracial] relationships, let's see a diverse crew," he told Entertainment Tonight. "Let's see it all. I think it is [a] late, good start. I'm excited for what's next." 

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