'Bachelorette' Clare Crawley on the BTS Talks She Had With Producers Over Dale Moss (Exclusive)
By Jennifer Drysdale
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Fans have seen Bachelorettes optimistic about finding their future husband on Night One of the ABC dating show -- but Clare Crawley is in a different league. The Sacramento-based hairstylist declared just hours after beginning her Bachelorette journey that she thought she had found her match, and it seems it might be with Dale Moss.
The 32-year-old former football player made quite an impression on Clare, who appears smitten with him in promos for her season. An explosive trailer released on Monday shows Clare in bed with Moss, while the other men wonder whether she really knows him.
"I knew the Dale that was in front of my face," Clare told ET's Lauren Zima on Tuesday. "Who he is to my face, that's what I care about. ... I'm sure there's a lot of stuff that he shared with me, that a lot of guys shared with me, that they didn't share with the other guys."
Clare and Dale's connection was so clear from the get-go that host Chris Harrison actually asked Clare if she wanted to meet the rest of the guys who hadn't yet made limo entrances. She said she did -- but also told ET she had "a lot of conversations" with producers about her interest in Dale.
"Definitely a lot of conversations are had behind the scenes of like, 'This guy caught me off guard on that,' and 'That guy is a hard no,'" she said. "You can already tell [on Night One] who has your attention and who doesn't."
Clare's physical and emotional connection with Dale was "electric," she described -- adding that it was something she'd never felt before so instantly.
"That was something that you can't really anticipate with anybody, you don't know," she shared. "[But I didn't know] like, was he feeling that? Are we on the same page?"
"Usually in my experience as relationships goes, there's always somebody that's ahead of the other person," Clare said. "It's really rare that you connect on that same page at the same time, so it was just -- it was one of those magical things that I guess just happens."
ET learned in August that she had ended her time as Bachelorette roughly two weeks into filming, after falling for one of her men. (Tayshia Adams was brought in as a new lead, though ABC and Warner Bros. have yet to confirm her casting.)
News of Clare's expedited season had fans speculating about whether she had contacted any of her contestants prior to filming. The 39-year-old had admitted before filming started in July that she had looked up some of her cast after they were announced in March.
"I don't know who'd not look them up!" she told ET. "There was nothing against the rules of going on social media and looking at people's [profiles]. I feel like I'd be doing myself a disservice to not do my research and look these guys up."
"He could be my future husband! I want to know what they're doing in their off time in quarantine. I want to know what they're keeping up with and what the type of content they're posting -- is it them partying? Is it them with a bunch of women? Or is it them with their family?" continued Clare, who noted that Blake Moynes actually contacted her before the show.
"Blake was the only person that messaged me, the only person I had any contact, talked to, any sort of communication with," she said. "We're given these rules to respect the process of it all and I definitely 100% respected the process."
ET's exclusive clip of the premiere showed Clare thanking Moynes for reaching out on social media, but it seems Dale also caught her attention. During the episode, she actually said she "knew it" after meeting Dale and "I've been waiting for this" before kissing him, seemingly thrilled that her opinion of him from social media held true in real life.
"Dale, in a lot of his Stories, he would talk about his mom and he'd talk about his family. He was with his family a lot and that is something that deeply resonates with me," Clare said. "I just felt on any level, whether it be friendship, whether it be a romantic connection, I just felt like there would be that good connection with him. But you ultimately don't know if it's a romantic connection, because you're just seeing him through social media."
How it all ends remains to be seen, and Clare isn't giving any hints. The Bachelorette played coy about whether she's engaged, and how exactly she "blew up" her season.
"I cannot spoil that," Clare teased of her ending, but noted she's "very happy."
Clare's journey continues on The Bachelorette, airing Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC. See more in the video below.