Were you one of the 35 million people who watched the season finale of Joe Millionaire? The 2003 reality show flew 20 women to France to compete for the heart of who they thought was a successful millionaire. In reality, the star of the series was Evan Marriott, a regular Joe Schmoe, who worked construction in Virginia.
The show ended with Evan, now 43, choosing Zora Andrich, a substitute teacher who he claimed was "not into his money." The couple won a $1 million prize, which they split evenly. However, the romance didn't last.
Now, 14 years later, the landscape of reality TV has drastically changed. But viewers of the once-popular show want to know: What's Evan been up to in recent years?
Evan in 2003 vs. 2015.
Of his new look, Evan commented on his beard, "Grew this overnight. All I do is think about a beard and it comes in." These days, it sounds like he severely regrets his reality TV stint, and prefers to focus on where he is now. "I started a business for myself, and everything is great. I did my first job I got it and literally almost was in tears. I called my dad and said, 'I feel like I’ve just been paroled. This is where I should have been,'" he told People magazine.
"The popular phrase is, 'You knew what you were getting into.' Well no, I didn't," Evan has said. "It was so embryonic. It was so new that no, you didn't know what you were getting into. I didn't know what I was walking into. I thought it was like Blind Date. It was a half-hour show. And then they sprung it on me that I was going to France. And I'm thinking, 'What the hell?' And then they offered me 50 grand."
Evan speaking at a conference in 2015.
An insider close to him revealed that Evan had no desire to live a life in the spotlight again. "He had no interest in revisiting that part of his life." The Virginia Beach native is back to working in construction, while Zora is currently working as a yoga instructor.
"It's not hard to embrace fame," Evan concluded. "Anybody can get kicked into a pool — it's treading water once you're in that pool."