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'Bachelorette' wedding draws big ratings

Average of 17.1 million watched Trista, Ryan tie the knot
/ Source: Reuters

“Bachelorette” star Trista Rehn snared hefty television ratings as well as a new husband in ABC’s Wednesday broadcast of her wedding, the finale in her ”reality” TV search for love.

Almost one in 10 Americans tuned in for at least a few minutes of the blond former cheerleader’s million-dollar marriage to Vail, Colorado fireman Ryan Sutter, ABC said.

Rehn dated and dropped a number of suitors early this year on “The Bachelorette,” part of “The Bachelor” reality television franchise, before settling on Sutter.

The real-life marriage was a bonanza for ABC, which reportedly paid Rehn $1 million to film the nuptials and footed a roughly $1 million wedding bill.

The Walt Disney Co.-owned network estimated about 26 million viewers saw at least six minutes of the broadcast of the wedding, which took place Saturday at a resort near Palm Springs, about 120 miles east of Los Angeles.

The two-hour show, the third of three programs about the wedding, attracted an average of 17.1 million viewers, easily giving ABC the lead for the night in prime time and its second-highest ratings of the season, behind the finale of the most recent “Bachelor” series.