Bethenny Frankel has been the subject of constant controversy as of late; it seems every other day she is embroiled in some sort of issue causing a media tail-spin! Needless to say — it’s been quite a year for diet drink maven and wannabe mogul.
Bethenny has made no secret of her desire to leave reality TV behind in the hopes of landing her own talk show. Recent reports stated Mama Frankel had shot a pilot for her own show, but was having trouble hooking a network even going so far as to hire a coach to soften the abrasive, no-nonsense style that made her famous in the reality world.
The Bethenny Ever After star’s dreams of being the next Oprah were apparently closer than we all thought, as The Hollywood Reporter is revealing NBC was jonesing to pick up some new talk show blood and Bethenny made a short list of contenders that included Survior host Jeff Probst and Ricki Lake (formerly of talks show’s pasts, currently of Dancing With The Stars).
The Hollywood Reporter describes that launching a talk show is a precarious situation for a network with all the competition from already established shows, thus they must carefully weigh who will gain the most traction with viewers nationwide. Basically, a show must stay in a holding tank and be demoed across a variety of markets before it is “cleared” in the “three-quarters of the country” needed to garner a launch. Once it gets a “launch” a network will back it and air the show.
“If NBC stations pass on her Warner Bros. Telepictures’ show, the former Real Housewife of New York could find it difficult to get the clearances she needs to launch despite support from Ellen DeGeneres,” THR explains of Bethenny’s predicament.
Well, unfortunately for Bethenny it seems NBC made the decision to go with Jeff’s show instead, while Ricki’s show is headed for the Tribune group of stations that helped launch Anderson Cooper’s now popular talk show. “This shuffle is probably bad news for Frankel who must now struggle to find enough carriage to make a launch likely,” the article alleges. Currently there is no expected launch for Bethenny’s show as she is still waiting to be picked up by major networks.
And there is more bad news for the reality star resulting from continued scrutiny over the contents of her “all natural” Skinnygirl Margarita! The New York Post is reporting an expanded lawsuit from former fans of the product, taking issue with the label’s assertion that the cocktail is concocted using “100 percent blue agave tequila.”
Christopher Rapcinsky and Erin Baker, currently taking action against the brand, have amended their $10M class action lawsuit for having “falsely claimed the drink was ‘all natural’ with ‘no preservatives’.”
Upon further investigation into the tequila used to produce the beverage the duo discovered it was actually “a lower quality and purity tequila by-product called mixto — essentially a mash of tequila and some unknown additives (rarely organic) which may comprise as much as 49 percent of the final mixed liquor.” Blech. All-natural, say what?
The duo’s lawyer, Tom Mullaney stated: “100 percent blue agave is not stuff people mix.” Additionally, he says comparing the mix to pure tequila is like “comparing Thunderbird wine to a fine Chianti. They’re both wine, but very different.” I’ll let you wine connoisseurs argue the veracity of his statement, as I’m an $8 a bottle kind of a girl.
The suit isn’t entirely blaming Bethenny (who is not named as a defendant) for the misconceptions, as it notes the discrepancies began occurring after Beam Global acquired the brand and the label changed at some point to say the drink was made “with premium Blue Agave Tequila,” removing the “’100 percent’ reference,” which the suit claims is “highly misleading.”
“Only time and pretrial discovery will tell what was really in the ‘tequila’ that went into the phony ‘all-natural’ margarita. What is certain is the fact that consumers would not have purchased Skinnygirl Margarita had they known it was manufactured with inferior mix to tequila,” the suit insists.
Beam Global is fighting back calling the suit “frivolous” and defending the label’s claims that the cocktail is made with premium tequila. “We will defend our case vigorously, and we are fully confident we will prevail,” the company’s rebuttal stated.
Bethenny’s reps have declined to comment on this latest attack on her product and she has not confronted the controversy via Twitter, opting instead to promote more products in the Skinnygirl line-up. Perhaps all the drama surrounding Bethenny might have something to do with networks passing on her talk show?
THOUGHTS ON BETHENNY’S LATEST DILEMNAS? ARE YOU SURPRISED HER TALK SHOW HAS NOT BEEN PICKED UP – WOULD YOU WATCH? THOUGHTS ON THE LAWSUIT: FRIVOLOUS OR WITH MERIT?