'Joe Millionaire' Pair Not So Dreamy in Interview
Thu Feb 20, 7:11 PM ET
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Less than a week after 35 million people watched "Joe Millionaire" Evan Marriott pick Zora Andrich over 19 other women, both say they could have fallen for others -- in her case, a horse.
Marriott, the shaggy 28-year-old construction worker who pretended to be heir to a $50 million fortune for the Fox reality show, lavished praise on runner-up Sarah Kozer in a People magazine interview.
And Andrich, portrayed on the show as a struggling teacher with a heart of gold, told People that during her stay at a rented French chateau she fell in love -- with a horse.
"Sarah and I got along like gangbusters ... a lot better than a lot of ex-girlfriends I've had," Marriott said in the interview, which was conducted the day after the show's finale and appears in the March 3 issue of People.
Marriott suggests that in the end he rejected Kozer because he couldn't be sure that she was interested in his hunky good looks and winning personality and not the phony $50 million.
"The premise of the show was to find a girl that I thought was into me for me," he told People. "Sarah and I were more intimate but that didn't mean Sarah wasn't a gold digger."
Marriott said he knew "without a shadow of a doubt" that Andrich was not after his phony money, adding that she was "sweet and nice" and "the perfect girl for the show."
In the final episode of the hit show, Marriott and Andrich were presented with $1 million dollars. Marriott gave her a ring and she pledged to continue her "journey" at his side.
But in the People interview Marriott sounded less than lovestruck as he described his 29-year-old TV sweetheart's reaction to their newfound fortune.
"She didn't believe it," he said. "She didn't believe it the day after. I almost got mad and just said: 'Look, you've just been offered half a million dollars. Why don't you snap out of it and realize what's going on?"
Andrich, meanwhile, wondered aloud during the People interview whether two people could really find true love in just a month's time -- then answered her own question.
"I am a true believer in possibility," she said. "I never rule out anything. But honestly I think it would be highly unlikely. The chances of it are pretty slim."
And she sounds dreamy only when describing the French chateau, where Fox filmed the show amid verdant fields and a stable of horses.
"Oh, I loved those horses," she said. "Being with the horse, the one whose name meant 'Sweetie' in French, I was in heaven," she said. "That's who has my heart. The horse."