With two seasons of success under its belt, The Bachelor was ready for a third. They’d already had an Ivy League super-achiever and a solidly Midwestern “renaissance man.” Who could they find next to fill those shoes?
America is a country that loves its self-made men, but in a prescient move, considering that heiress Paris Hilton was just a few months away from becoming a household name, The Bachelor producers decided the country was ready to fall in love with an heir.
Andrew Firestone is the great grandson of Harvey Firestone, founder of the tire company that bears his now household name. And apparently one successful business wasn’t enough for the Firestone clan, as Andrew’s father had also started a winery business that the L.A. Times Magazine says “finally put Southern California on the world wine map.”
Andrew might, at first glance, seem to fall right in line with the usual Bachelor list of requirements. It turns out, though, that he might not have been the producers’ first pick for the season.
Apparently, originally it was Andrew’s brother, Adam, who was contacted by the producers for the show. Adam was a little occupied with his wife and four children, so he sent them in the direction of brother Andrew.
As the saying goes, a man being rich is like a woman being pretty, and Andrew was apparently cautious about the potential bachelorettes being blinded by all that lovely wealth. So the women did not know about his background before coming on board, which is just what Andrew was looking for. He said of the show, “This is a unique opportunity to meet a lot of beautiful women who come into this sincerely… without knowing my last name.”
One woman who appeared to come onto The Bachelor with a sincere motivation to find love was Jen Schefft. The account executive and Ohio native grew up in the suburbs of Cleveland, so Andrew’s wealthy California wine country lifestyle was quite a change of pace for her. During the show, Andrew’s father asked her if she could see herself settling down there, and, at the time, she admits, “I couldn’t…not because it isn’t beautiful-it is-it’s just that I’d never been anywhere like this before. But I can see why everyone loves living here.”
A frank admission of reservations might have scared other men away, but Andrew said that he liked that “She was not only honest, but outspoken in her honesty.”
He said that was all part of what attracted him to her. “She had a certain confidence that was noticeable. It was obvious, because she was in a difficult situation, with 24 other ladies and one man. It was hard for her and hard for me. I had to pick up on tiny little indicators, as to whether or not each woman was a good fit.”
He continued, “With Jen, it was different. I didn’t have to try so hard. And we had an easy give and take. There has to be a certain play off one another, a certain give and take in a relationship, be it in conversation or activity, and we had an easy give and take, and a very natural play between one another from the start.”
Of course it helped that Jen is a lovely woman, and also that she won over his family members, a move that is looking to be a trend through these Rewinds. So potential future bachelorettes, take note: do not underestimate the importance of impressing the relatives!
So once again, we had another Bachelor proposal, but, sadly, once again, we had another Bachelor break-up as well. This couple lasted ten months, but eventually it ended. There seemed to be less public acrimony between these two, without accusations of bad behavior or questions about whether or not the whole thing was for real. “Our love for each other was genuine,” said Jen, “but we confronted the same challenges as any other couple trying to make a relationship work day to day.” There were reports that the two might have later attempted to reconcile, but nothing materialized.
Jen went on to look for love again on the air, starring in The Bachelorette. Andrew, on the other hand, has made a few more television appearances, but has shied away from any additional televised matchmaking. His appearance have been outside the romantic arena, appearing on the Celebrity Paranormal Project, Celebrity Poker Showdown, and Flavor of Love’s Charm School. He’s also hosted a lifestyle series called Billionaires Car Club.
Despite the high-flying title of that program and his family’s wealth, Andrew insists that both he, and the Firestones in general, are down-to-earth people due to their wineries. “We’re farmers,” he says. “We drive trucks, we wear work boots. My mother was chasing cattle out of the vineyard hours before I was born. That was the year of the first harvest. The vineyard is everything I know.”
So that’s where he’s ultimately ended up, back on the farm. He is general manager of the family’s vineyard in Paso Robles. And he’s found someone to testify to his claims of being a more regular guy than his Firestone heir status might imply: his new fiancée.
“[He] is a lot more down-to-earth than I pictured him,” says 29-year old model/actress Ivana Bozilovic, who became engaged to Andrew earlier this year. The two have been dating for two years, and Ivana apparently is working with Andrew at one of the family’s vineyard.
Some posited that it was partially Jen’s strong ties to the Midwest and reluctance to fully relocate to California that helped create some of the relationship challenges she and Andrew faced. So the fact that Ivana appears to already be well-accustomed to the vineyard lifestyle might be a good sign that while Andrew didn’t find love on The Bachelor, he has might still have now found a love to last.
‘The Bachelor’ Rewind: Season 2
‘The Bachelor’ Rewind: Season 4
Leslie Seaton, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
Sources: iVillage, TV.com, Inside Santa Ynez, wchstv.com, Reality TV Scoop
(Image courtesy of TV.com)