Roses From Andy
Pearl Harbor doc Andy Baldwin stars on TV’s ‘The Bachelor’ hoping to find his soul mate
By Lisa Asato
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A rose from Lt. Baldwin means
bachelorettes (below and on next page)
get to come back for another week
A recent surge in the floral market for long-stemmed red roses can only mean one thing: The next season of The Bachelor has arrived.
“I plan on getting rose after rose until I get a ring on the finger,” says one bachelorette in a promotional teaser, well aware that receiving a red rose promises another shot at winning the prize, which in this case is the heart - and possibly the hand - of Pearl Harbor-based doctor and Navy Lt. Andy Baldwin, one of Cosmopolitan magazine’s 50 hottest bachelors in 2005.
The ABC reality romance show premieres its 10th season of The Bachelor: Officer and a Gentleman, Monday evening at 8:30, when Baldwin meets 25 prospective mates as they arrive one by one in limousines.
“I was beaming from ear to ear; never have I met such an amazing pool of women before,” says Baldwin, who grew up in Amish country in Lancaster, Pa.
A former skeptic who was nominated by a friend, Baldwin says he approached the show with an open mind, gave it his all and is now a believer.
“I had no idea how difficult a journey and a mission this was going to be, and I’ve done a lot of things getting to be a doctor, and I’ve done the Ironman six times,” he says, adding that having to send women home during rose ceremonies “really crushed me.”
“This is hard but well worth the journey,” he says.“I came out with an amazing woman and I’m totally in love.”
For the sake of secrecy, Baldwin won’t reveal any more about the woman who won his heart, nor even whether he proposed on the show. But while fans are kept in limbo, so is the new couple. They remain separated for the duration of the show’s eight episodes, save for phone calls and two or three rendezvous organized by producers.
“I’m looking forward to the end of the show so I can reunite with the woman I’m in love with, that’s what I’m looking most forward to,” says Baldwin, adding he’s emotionally ready to settle down and have “at least three, maybe four, maybe five” children.
“I want a big family,” he says. “My father comes from a family of seven kids, my mother three, and I have a brother and sister. You’ll see on the show we did a lot of stuff with children, and I just adore ‘em and can’t wait.”
In nine seasons The Bachelor and its spinoff The Bachelorette have produced three long-standing couples, including one marriage with a baby on the way, between Trista and Ryan, and another planned marriage between Charlie and Sarah from season seven.
“If you look at it, man, we’re on a hot streak,” says executive producer Mike Fleiss, who describes Baldwin as one of the show’s more mature and sincere bachelors. “That’s something we haven’t had from all the bachelors, unfortunately, and it made it harder on Andy and the girls because they made deeper connections with him faster than we’ve ever seen before,” Fleiss says. “Someone asked if Andy’s commitment-phobic - this guy’s one of the most committed guys I’ve ever met - look at his career, look at his commitment to the Navy, and he really brought the same level of commitment to the show.”
Baldwin’s assets - his stunning good looks and physique matched by an equally brilliant resume - attracted an outpouring of interested female applicants.
“We had hundreds (of applicants) before announcing Andy, and after Andy was announced I think the next day I came in and there were something like 9,000 e-mails and phone calls,” says casting director Robyn Kass.“I mean, it was crazy numbers.”
Those numbers were whittled down to 25 bachelorettes, whom viewers will get to meet on Monday night. Baldwin himself will further whittle those num-
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