'Bachelor' 2023: Was this contestant announced and then withdrawn from Zach's season?

Vanessa Esparsen, who lives in Scottsdale, was announced on "The Bachelor's" Facebook page as a finalist for Zach Shallcross' Season 27 cast on Sept. 23.
Vanessa Esparsen, who lives in Scottsdale, was announced on "The Bachelor's" Facebook page as a finalist for Zach Shallcross' Season 27 cast on Sept. 23.
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An Arizona woman who was announced in 2022 as a potential cast member on "The Bachelor" in 2023 was cut from the show before meeting lead Zach Shallcross.

Though a few contestants are cut each year between the blink-and-you'll-miss-it "early look" announcement on Facebook that is always deleted within days of posting and the final cast list, there was online speculation that Vanessa E. might have been removed due to a social media post from 2016.

On Sept. 23, 2022, the show shared first names and photos of 32 women who may be on Shallcross' Season 27, which starts on Jan. 23, 2023. Vanessa E. — identified as a 26-year-old from Scottsdale and whose full name, according to social media accounts, is Vanessa Esparsen — was among the finalists included in the post but did not appear in the final cast list.

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Reality Steve, a Bachelor Nation blogger who is notorious for posting spoilers of varying degrees of veracity, tweeted on Sept. 24 that Esparsen "was one of the cuts pre-show and won’t be on this season of the 'Bachelor.'"

Filming for Season 27 began on Sept. 26, according to Reality Steve.

He believes that social media users' discovery of a screenshot of a 2016 Facebook post from an account that appears to belong to Esparsen may have influenced her participation in the show. Or she might have just been among the unfortunate few who get so close but don't ultimately make it to the "Bachelor" mansion in Agoura Hills, California.

On Sept. 26, Esparsen appeared to have created a new Twitter account to "address what I said in 2016."

The Twitter account @v_esparsen wrote that the Facebook post — in which Esparsen blamed the woman Brock Allen Turner sexually assaulted at Stanford University in 2015 for being inebriated — "was horrible, insensitive and disgusting." That woman was eventually revealed to be Chanel Miller, who wrote a memoir about her experience.

The latest Tweet reads, in part, "The 18/19 year old I was in 2016 is not a reflection of the person I have grown to be today."

The Arizona Republic has reached out to Esparsen for comment via social media.

According to a Facebook account that appears to belong to her, Esparsen is originally from Highlands Ranch, Colorado, where she attended Mountain Vista High School.

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The women on Zach Shallcross' season of 'The Bachelor'

The 30 cast members for Season 27 of "The Bachelor" include:

  • Alyssa from Smyrna, Georgia.

  • Anastasia from Baltimore and San Diego.

  • Ariel from New York City.

  • Bailey from Nashville, Tennessee.

  • Brianna from Jersey City, New Jersey.

  • Brooklyn from Mineola, Texas, and Stillwater, Oklahoma.

  • Cara from New York City and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

  • Cat from New York City.

  • Charity from Columbus, Georgia.

  • Christina Mandrell from Nashville, Tennessee.

  • Davia from Charleston, South Carolina.

  • Gabriella (Gabi) from Houston and Pittsford, Vermont.

  • Genevie from Baltimore City.

  • Greer from New York City and Houston.

  • Holland from Boca Raton, Florida.

  • Jessica (Jess) from Winter Springs, Florida.

  • Kaitlyn (Kaity) from Austin, Texas.

  • Katherine from Tampa, Florida.

  • Kimberly from Los Angeles.

  • Kylee from Charlotte, North Carolina.

  • Chandralekha (Lekha) from Miami.

  • Madison from Dilworth, Minnesota, and Fargo, North Dakota.

  • Mercedes from Nashville and Bloomfield, Iowa.

  • Olivia L. from Rochester, New York.

  • Olivia M. from Cincinnati.

  • Rebecca (Becca) from Burbank, California.

  • Sonia from Long Island, New York.

  • Vanessa D. from Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

  • Victoria J. from Fort Worth, Texas.

  • Viktoria E. from New York City.

Sloan from Santa Monica, California, and Esparsen had been announced as possible contestants in September 2022 but were subsequently cut from the cast.

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Who is the new bachelor in 2023?

Zach Shallcross, a 26-year-old tech executive from Anaheim Hills, California, was announced as the Season 27 bachelor during the finale for Season 19 of "The Bachelorette," which aired on Sept 20, 2022.

Shallcross dated Rachel Recchia during his time on the show and self-eliminated after Fantasy Suites as one of Recchia's final three contestants.

According to ABC's press release, Shallcross "splits time between Texas and Orange County" to be with family. As is common with "Bachelor" leads, he is looking for a relationship that is as strong as his parents', as they've been married for more than 30 years.

What time is 'The Bachelor' premiere 2023?

"The Bachelor" Season 27 starring Zach Shallcross premieres on ABC (Channel 15 in Phoenix) at 7 p.m. MST (8 p.m. Eastern/Pacific) Monday, Jan. 23.

How to watch 'The Bachelor'

"The Bachelor" broadcasts on your local ABC station on Mondays at 8 p.m. (or 7 p.m. MST). You can also watch live online on https://abc.com (login to your cable provider), YouTube TV, FuboTV, Hulu + Live TV and other streaming services.

Episodes are posted the next day on https://abc.com/shows/the-bachelor (cable provider login needed for most episodes) and Hulu.

Reach Entertainment Reporter KiMi Robinson at kimi.robinson@gannett.com. Follow her on Twitter @kimirobin and Instagram @ReporterKiMi.

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: 'Bachelor' 2023: How to watch and who was cut from the cast