ABC-bachelorette-andi-dorfman.jpg“The Bachelor” franchise world was part of a sad event this week when Eric Hill, a contestant on Andi Dorfman’s “Bachelorette” season — which is still filming — was killed in a paragliding accident.

Minor spoilers for “The Bachelorette” Season 10 below; read on at your own risk.

Obviously, in the wake of the tragedy, the top concern is for Eric’s family, which is exactly what executive producer Mike Fleiss tells E! News.

“We’re going to try to be as sensitive as possible,” says Fleiss. “It’s a
bizarre predicament that we never expected to be in, but our problems
aren’t important. It’s about his family now. My heart goes out to them. I
pray for them and my staff, they’re just wrecked.

“We’re all just devastated. He was such a vibrant, young dude. He was. It’s tragic,” Fleiss continues. “He was such a young guy who lived life to the fullest. I couldn’t
believe it when I heard. I’m still in shock. We’re all in shock. This
transcends everything, certainly a television show.”

He’s absolutely right, of course, but it does raise some interesting questions about the upcoming season.

According to Reality Steve, Hill not only gets the first one-on-one date with Andi, but his exit from the show does not come during a rose ceremony. This probably means that Hill will be a prominent suitor throughout the season. It’s a tough situation for the editors and producers because they don’t want to be insensitive in light of what has happened, but it would also be weird not to show Hill very much. It gets even tougher if he left the show under adversarial circumstances (though it’s not clear whether he did).

The fact that Hill’s death happened while the show is still filming is also a factor. Andi is right around the Top 3-Top 4 in the process this week. Do the producers tell her during filming what happened to Hill or wait until after it’s all over? How might that affect her decisions going forward? It’s something the show has to consider and it will certainly be interesting to see how the producers handle it.

“The Bachelorette” premieres Monday, May 19 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."