Matt James Talks About The Pressure of Being the First Black ‘Bachelor’

After nearly two decades on-air and 25 seasons of the flagship show, ABC’s hit dating series is hitting a milestone — and its star knows it’s a big deal. Matt James opened up to Variety about holding that title, “I felt that pressure — I’m not going to lie — initially.”

James is biracial, but identifies as Black. Growing up with a Black father and white mother, the 28-year-old North Carolina native says the way he is viewed in the world has resulted in him living his life as a Black man — and his life experiences will be similar to those of his future kids, which he hopes, are a result of his love story on national TV.

“The reality of this experience is that I’m hoping to leave with somebody, and with an engagement comes a marriage and kids,” James says. “And if our kids aren’t Black, they’re going to have some sort of pigmentation, so it’s a conversation that needs to take place because there are things that I’ve experienced that our kids are going to experience, and you’ve got to be ready for that. It’s just going to be a reality.”

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