In an interview with TV Guide, the outspoken housewife discusses her family drama, why she no longer talks to axed castmate Lisa Wu Hartwell, and why she believes new housewife Phaedra Parks is jealous of her.
Excerpts are below –
TVGuide.com: Even though you haven’t seen it yet, I can also tell you that the first episode shows you and Dwight coming to blows. What happened there? What did we miss in the off-season?
Leakes: What everyone doesn’t know is that we don’t talk on a regular basis. We were never the kind of friends that call each other every day … He and I were never that way. I know it may have appeared differently on the show. I did really like him and respect him, but one of the reasons that we hadn’t talked for a really long time is I felt that he had been doing things that weren’t worthy of a friendship.
TVGuide.com: You mean the deal between Dwight and Greg. (In the premiere, Kim tells NeNe that Dwight had been saying NeNe’s husband Greg had asked him for a $10,000 loan; Greg denies it.) Does the truth of that situation come out?
Leakes: I think so. I’m pretty sure. I know we address the issue. I am very clear today about what happened, but at the time, I was not. You guys will see.
TVGuide.com: This season you deal with your son being arrested and your marital problems with Greg. Was it more difficult to keep filming than it has been in previous seasons?
Leakes: Yes. I go through a lot this season, emotionally, in my personal life and with my children. I think you’re going to see me go through a lot with my family. I will say that one thing I am is a very good mom. I’m not like a lot of moms today. I was raised strict and I’m pretty strict with my boys. Also, you guys have never seen Greg and I really disagree; you’ll see a lot of that this season. It was tough though. Really emotional scenes are draining. If you are crying and having an emotional moment in front of the camera, those are the times I want to run out of the damn house and cry by myself. It’s just hard when you know people are looking.
TVGuide.com: How are you and Greg now?
Leakes: Greg and I, you know, we’re still husband and wife. We’re still married. No matter what happens, we will hopefully be friends.
TVGuide.com: There are two new housewives this season, Phaedra Parks and Cynthia Bailey. Cynthia’s not in the premiere, but Phaedra is. So far we know she’s a hotshot lawyer — and she’s got some strong opinions about you already.
Leakes: I knew Phaedra before. I didn’t know her personally, but we are from the same home town. We went to the same high school. I’m a little bit older. When we were in school — and I can say this because she told me this herself — she would say to me, “I’ve always looked up to you. I’ve always admired you.” I was very popular in high school. Once she was on this show though? She never really talked to me or spoke to me. It was strange. She had nothing at all to say to me. I felt like there was some type of jealousy there. … I will tell you I had heard that Phaedra always thought she was always glamorous or fabulous, I guess. I never saw that. I heard that a lot when we were filming, that she thought she was a diva and a “real Southern belle.” I was like, “Well, we’re from Athens, Ga.,” so I don’t think she’s a Southern belle.” She’s country.
TVGuide.com: Do you keep in touch with Lisa now that she’s off the show?
Leakes: No, I don’t talk to Lisa at all. I didn’t get to know her until the second season. We were really cool, even though … Look, I’m a very good judge of character. I should win a damn award for being a good judge of character. I get you right away. I get it. And so, as Lisa and I hung out more, I got her. That’s all I can really say. I got her. I got who she was. I was OK with who she was, but we could not be good friends. We could be friendly, and work together and even have a drink together. But as far as me crying on her shoulder or telling her secrets, I wouldn’t.
A new episode of the Atlanta Housewives airs next Monday on Bravo at 9/8c.