New ‘Bachelor’ Matt James shares the reactions he’s received from Black friends

28-year-old Matt James recently made television history when ABC announced he would be the first Black lead on the upcoming season of "The Bachelor." On Monday’s "The Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons - Ever!," he discussed the incredibly positive reactions he’s experienced from both fans and members of the Black community.

“I've heard from a lot of my Black friends that aren't Bachelor Nation faithful that are excited about me and honored by the position I'm in,” said James. “This opportunity to just represent what it's going to look like to have diverse relationships and tell those love stories, I couldn’t be more excited about that.”

James revealed that his mother was particularly excited by the announcement. “I think the grandkid counter for my mom started when that announcement was made,” he said. As for how many grandkids she wants, James joked, “She wants a basketball team.”

Video Transcript

- What has the overwhelming feeling been? And what's the response been?

MATT JAMES: Oh, man, my phone's been off the hook. The most interesting text I got was probably from my third grade teacher. You know, I hadn't heard from her since I missed my book report. So there's people coming from all over the place to share their excitement.

KYLIE MAR: 28-year-old Matt James recently made television history when "ABC" announced he would be the first black "Bachelor." And on Monday's "Bachelor: The Greatest Seasons Ever," he discussed the incredible reactions he's received from more than just fans.

MATT JAMES: I've heard from a lot of my black friends that aren't "Bachelor" Nation faithful, that are excited about me and honored that I'm in a position I'm in.

KYLIE MAR: As people throughout the country are calling for an end to systemic racism, many members of the entertainment industry are calling for more diverse representation on-screen as well. And Matt is excited to represent.

MATT JAMES: And have this opportunity to just-- just represent what it's going to look like to have diverse relationships and tell those love stories. And I couldn't be more excited about that.

KYLIE MAR: And while "Bachelor" fans are excited to see Matt find true love on the show, he revealed that it's his mom who was the most excited to hear the announcement.

MATT JAMES: The grand kid counter from my mom started when that announcement was made. So--

- How many does she want?

MATT JAMES: She wants a basketball team.

- She wants a basketball team.

[LAUGHTER]

MATT JAMES: Oh, and a minivan.

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