Nick Viall would have done “The Bachelor” for free.
In fact, the two-time “Bachelorette” runner-up claims he was so unfazed by the paycheck that he only made one demand when he was in talks to lead Season 21: “Please cast women I’m going to be into.”
Viall detailed his conversations with producers on Monday’s episode of Jason Tartick’s podcast, “Trading Secrets,” where franchise alums have been known to divulge just how much ABC paid them to go on TV.
“I didn’t really care about the money,” he said, insisting he became “The Bachelor” in 2017 for the right reasons. “I mean, I needed the money at the time, but I would’ve done it for free.”
Viall said that he “lived without a job for a year” before being cast and had asked producers to simply “give me what I need to survive for another year” with “The Bachelor” being his only source of income.
“I basically said, ‘Give me this number,’” he recalled of contract negotiations, noting that the deal was closed in just one day because his pay was such a “reasonable” amount.
“All I cared about [were the women],” he added.
Bachelor Nation fans were initially shocked by Viall’s casting, as he had beat out fan favorite Luke Pell, who was all but confirmed to take on the lead.
“I think he negotiated,” Viall speculated. “I don’t think the producers particularly cared for Luke Pell the person.”
He continued, “It’s stupid for anyone who’s offered that role [to say no]. Nickel-and-diming over [$10,000 or] $20,000 is the dumbest thing you can do given what you can do with that opportunity gives you.”
Pell, who now works as a real estate agent, promptly responded to Viall’s comments, telling E! News, “I can’t speak to where Nick gets info related to ‘Bachelor’ casting contracts from network attorneys, but I will say that was very gracious of Nick to say that he would have done it for free.”
Pell, 37, then suggested that Viall donate some of his “‘Bachelor’ talent fee proceeds” to veterans and children’s charities in need.
Page Six has reached out to Pell’s reps for additional comment.
In 2016, Pell opened up about having the rug pulled from underneath him at the eleventh hour when Viall’s surprise casting was announced.
“It was like, ‘Is this real life?’ I really canceled a lot of stuff, like three months of my life,” he told The Post at the time.
“We did fittings with the stylists, I contacted my sister to be on the show as a family adviser,” he continued. “You’re asked to do these life-changing things and to postpone a lot of your life, but then there’s no guarantee, there’s no signature until the day filming starts. It’s a tough position to be in.”
Viall proposed to Vanessa Grimaldi on the show, but they split the following year. He has since found love with girlfriend Natalie Joy.
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