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Rumor had it on Tuesday that ABC had finally found a Bachelor of color to add some diversity to the show: former Bachelorette winner Roberto Martinez.
In keeping with the trend of providing jilted former Bachelor and Bachelorette hopefuls and winners a chance to headline the following year's show, it came as no surprise that the network would choose Martinez (the ex-fiance of last season's Bachelorette Ali Fedotowsky) to dole out the roses next season.
But not so fast. Sources tell E! News that the Life & Style story reporting Martinez as the next Bachelor is premature. According to E!, ABC is hosting auditions to possibly cast an unknown as the leading man for season 17.
The good news is that Martinez, who was with Fedotowsky for 18 months before they called off their engagement, is still in the mix -- it's just not a done deal. In addition to the auditions, the network execs are also waiting to see if any of the current season of Bachelorette runners-up strikes them as a possibility. Nothing will be finalized until later in the summer, the source says.
Without an official announcement naming Martinez as the new Bachelor, ABC may face backlash from critics who've claimed the show is one of the least diverse shows on primetime.
In April, a suit was filed against ABC for racial discrimination by rejected Bachelor hopefuls Nathaniel Claybrooks and Christopher Johnson, who claimed they weren't provided a fair chance to appear on the show because they were African-American.
ABCs terse response: "Television casting decisions are protected by the First Amendment."