When the show was officially halted due to an investigation into allegations of misconduct, most contestants went back to their regular lives and jobs. Everything went back to normal … until the show came calling again this week.
PEOPLE has spoken to three former cast members who say production is frantically scrambling to cast the rebooted season, which will include some contestants who were not originally set to appear.
The contestants share similar details: that they received exploratory calls to see if they would be immediately available to participate. They were told that some of the contestants from the aborted season would not return. “It was presented as a new adventure,” one of the contestants tells PEOPLE.
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Contestants would need to be available later this week, but it’s unclear when they would actually start filming. They are being asked to clear their schedules until the end of July. Contestants would be compensated $12,500 for the adventure but might have the opportunity to earn more.
One of the possible replacements tells PEOPLE he was concerned about starting the show on unequal footing with other cast members who had already begun the experience. He was told that this was not going to be the entire cast minus DeMario Jackson and Corinne Olympios, who have been central figures in the ongoing controversy, but that new players would become part of the mix.
In a statement obtained by PEOPLE on Tuesday, Warner Bros. addressed the controversy and acknowledged that the reboot show will be different.
“As we previously stated, we recently became aware of allegations regarding an incident on the set of Bachelor in Paradise in Mexico. We take all such allegations seriously. The safety, security and well-being of the cast and crew is our number one concern, and we suspended filming so that the allegations could be investigated immediately and thoroughly. Our internal investigation, conducted with the assistance of an outside law firm, has now been completed,” the statement reads.
“Out of respect for the privacy interests of those involved, we do not intend to release the videotape of the incident. We can say, however, that the tape does not support any charge of misconduct by a cast member. Nor does the tape show, contrary to many press reports, that the safety of any cast member was ever in jeopardy. Production on this season of Bachelor in Paradise will be resuming, and we plan to implement certain changes to the show’s policies and procedures to enhance and further ensure the safety and security of all participants,” the statement concludes.
Bachelor in Paradise will return to ABC later this summer.