How The Bachelor Fixed My Teeth and Ruined My Street Cred: One Man's Account
Back in 2008, ABC's The Bachelor decided to import a stud from overseas to headline the franchise's twelfth iteration, The Bachelor: London Calling. Matt Grant was textbook handsome with capped teeth, a set of abs hard enough to grind roses into potpourri, a dreamy career title ("financier") and even better, an adorable British accent. Perfect picnic dates came and went, and then in a shocking twist, Grant sucker-punched his adoring female fan base by proposing to Shayne Lamas, the then-22-year-old "actress" and daughter of Lorenzo Lamas, instead of pharmaceutical-rep-next-door Chelsea. Within weeks, the couple broke up after allegations that Shayne stepped out on her Brit Bachelor and Grant was never to be heard from again. That is, until Radar tracked him down and paid him for some shocking confessions about the producer manipulations, teeth bleaching and binge drinking that went on inside the Bachelor mansion.
As Grant tells it, he had never even heard of The Bachelor when he was solicited for the gig in a London pub. A "really hot" woman swept in, approached Grant and said that she was casting for an American reality show. Intrigued, Grant gave his information to the scout and before he knew it, he was on a plane to Los Angeles. Once he had landed, a pack of producers surrounded him Miss Congeniality-style and started making him over in an empty plane hangar (presumably).
"They were really abrupt. It was very funny. They said, Brits don't look after their teeth. I swear, the British have the worst dentists in the world. And my teeth were -- not brilliant, but not terrible but somewhere in between there. And they said, 'You need new teeth.' So these teeth [pointing to his smile], thank you very much ABC.' I think my teeth were some ridiculous figure. Tens of thousands I think."
Additionally, producers made sure that he never had any face stubble and outfitted him with jackets and shirts that made him look like he "sold houses in friggin' Brentwood." The experience wasn't entirely makeover torture though. For example, Grant was able to "put smiles on people's faces" and meet his "comedy icon" Ellen DeGeneres.
The negatives though, where to begin? For one, his street cred is gone.
"Obviously there is a stigma to being attached to such a cheesy show like The Bachelor. Being known as Matt Grant, The Bachelor, that sucks...When I go on dates now, I have to take roses with me."
But Matt Grant today is not Matt Grant The Bachelor anymore, he claims. He is much smarter and realizes that he only chose Shayne because he naively mistook her comfort in front of cameras as comfort in front of Grant. Another factor that likely contributed to his proposal after only six weeks was the sheer amount of alcohol he was swigging to get past his own nerves with women who "did not suit [him]."
Regardless of whether he was compatible with any of them, some senior producers quickly decided that Shayne was the favorite.
"There was definitely some favoritism that went on between some of the senior producers on the show towards Shayne and I think a lot of that was understandable because she was good in front of the camera because she had had experience. Yes, it helped that as far as selling the show and everything had been put in the can, it was great that someone goes right to the end that is kind of attached to a family of actors...Without a doubt, she was promoted to me more than others on the show."
But once producers exited the equation after production had wrapped, their chemistry flamed out.
"I thought we could have some fun, have a laugh and then have a bit of success from it and then it became apparent that we just could not work together. She went and did Girls Gone Wild magazine without telling anyone and like, I didn't want to be attached to a brand like that."
So let's get to the chase. Why is Grant is finally choosing now to sell his story and get a little publicity at the hand of his "embarrassing" engagement?
For a new reality venture, of course. Just last Saturday, Grant tracked down Us Magazine to tell them about his upcoming show Pimp My Bride!, an "organic follow-up to The Bachelor" about the "groom being in control of the wedding." Warner Brothers picked up the show, which he wrote shortly after filming for ABC.
In addition, the former Bachelor is considering participating in the Bachelor Pad show, where former contestants are dumped into a house and subjected to cameras, challenges and more drinking. Said Grant, "I've thought about doing it because I'm obviously not famous anymore and it would give me fifteen minutes of fame!"