Creator Mike Fleiss has a second cousin who was also in the business of fixing up men and women--Heidi Fleiss, the notorious Hollywood madam.
Networks were originally leery of The Bachelor because Fleiss was the man behind Fox's notorious Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire? Other Fleiss shows, like Are You Hot? and High School Reunion, have not achieved the same level of success as The Bachelor.
Two Bachelors--Bob Guiney and Jesse Palmer--were quarterbacks at Division I-A football programs in college. Guiney was a backup at Michigan State in the early '90s, while Palmer started 14 games for nationally ranked Florida from 1997-2000.
Before becoming the Bachelor, Alex Michel had applied to be a contestant on CBS' Survivor: The Australian Outback. He was turned down.
The first rose ever offered on The Bachelor went to Kimberly Karels, a nanny who ended up as one of Michel's final four choices in the first season.
Trista Rehn has said that Michel called her a few days after choosing Amanda Marsh at their final rose ceremony and said he wanted to continue their relationship. Michel has denied it.
Michel didn't find lasting love on TV, but he did parlay his notoriety into a job as spokesman for the online dating service Match.com.
Several other Bachelor and Bachelorette participants have stayed in front of the camera. The Bachelorette's Charlie Maher is now a correspondent for Extra, and Brooke Smith, who was dumped by Bachelor number two Aaron Buerge, is a reporter for a local station in her home state of Alabama.
The show's producers pay for the rings offered to the final choice, however, Buerge opted to spend his own money on the $34,000 Harry Winston bauble he gave to Helene Eksterowicz.
After Buerge and Eksterowicz called off their engagement, they sold the ring on eBay and split the proceeds.
The show has recycled contestants three times: (1) Rehn, rejected on the first Bachelor, went on to become the first Bachelorette; (2) on that show, she turned away Guiney, who became the fourth Bachelor; and (3) one of his final four women, Meredith Phillips, starred in the second Bachelorette.
In December 2003, the show's producers sued Guiney for breach of contract. They claimed Guiney was using his fame from the show to promote his CD, 3 Sides. A judge later ruled in favor of Guiney and his label, Wind-Up Records.
A 37,000-square-foot Beverly Hills mansion used as a location on the second Bachelorette was rented by Michael Jackson in January 2004 at a cost of between $70,000 and $100,000 per month.
Trista Rehn and Ryan Sutter are the show's only couple to make it to the altar thus far. Their televised wedding cost ABC nearly $4 million, but more than 17 million people watched.
At least two other contestants, however, have found Hollywood-style romance outside the show: Guiney is now dating All My Children star Rebecca Budig; and Jen Schefft, whose engagement to Bachelor number three Andrew Firestone ended in December 2003, is reportedly seeing another reality star--Bill Rancic, the winner of The Apprentice.
Before The Apprentice, Rancic himself had applied to star in The Bachelor.
Bachelorette Meredith Phillips worked as a model prior to the show. Her likeness appeared in catalogs for Nordstrom and Land's End and on the packaging for Microsoft's Digital Image Pro software.
Through four editions of The Bachelor and two of The Bachelorette, Michel, Buerge, Firestone, Guiney, Rehn and Phillips handed out a total of 235 roses.
Through the first four Bachelors and two Bachelorettes, no one has rejected a rose offered to him or her. Four people did, however, opt to leave prior to a rose ceremony.