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Casting drama is nothing new for Real Housewives of New York. In the latest upset to plague the show, a potential new Housewife was given the axe after her husband was charged with investment fraud. But why? It makes for such interesting television!

The NY Post is reporting that Annie Churchill was on a short list of contenders to be added to the newly revamped Season 5 cast when producers discovered a dirty little secret; her husband Andrew Albert was arrested and charged with grand larceny and fraud after several investors accused him of using over $600,000 collected for a proposed online-shopping website for personal expenses. Wow! Here comes the NY version of Taylor Armstrong!

According to sources the network made the decision to avoid mingling with anyone else facing criminal charges given Russell Armstrong‘s recent suicide, thus Annie was given the boot. Michael Farkas a lawyer for Andrew confirmed that Bravo decided not cast Annie in the wake of what happened adding that his client is completely innocent and currently working to fight the charges, which he claims are “baseless.” Although Annie is not included in the cast full-time, her rep is claiming she may still make a small appearance in the upcoming season.

Bravo is not commenting on the latest gossip. “We haven’t finished shooting this season yet, so we haven’t made any kind of casting decisions for season five yet,” a rep for the network stated.

In other RHONY news one of the new Housewives has a famous relative! Fran Dresher is known for her role as the nanny turned housewife on The Nanny, but now she’s also gaining some attention for being the cousin of new RHONY Housewife Aviva Drescher. Speaking to the Huffington Post‘s Rob Shuter, Fran talks about how reality TV isn’t really her cup of tea, but she isn’t going to pull a Real Housewives of New Jersey and start some televised family drama over the ordeal.

“I would never [do a reality show],” Fran told Rob, adding that she’s been approached several times to become the subject of one! “During the times that reality was so big, sitcoms were so not en vogue. ‘We should do a reality show with you,’ [I was told] and I said no,” Fran relays. “First of all, I don’t like them. It appeals to the lowest common denominator. It’s not really reality, because they have to have conflict in them to have people sitting there.” Wow! She really, really doesn’t like them.

“I’ve never flipped a table in my life,” Fran added with a laugh. “I’m scared to admit, but one of my cousins is one of the new ‘Housewives’ of New York and yesterday we had my book party at Dylan’s Candy Bar. … Well, I said hello and we talked a little bit.”

Finally some former NY Housewives news, Kelly Bensimon is contradicting herself again. In a new interview with Zap2it, Kelly claims she was never really friends with ex-cast mates LuAnn de Lesseps and Jill Zarin!

When asked if she keeps in touch with any of her former co-stars, the ditzy model replied: “Luann I speak to and Jill I talk to. We were cast mates, not really friends.”

Interesting, considering that in a recent interview with AVENUE Magazine, Kelly revealed that one of the positives of participating in the show was making a “life-long” friend in Jill. Jill agreed, telling the mag, “Our friendship is real. She’s the most loyal, good friend you could ever count on. She’s such a hard worker.” The two have also been photographed together post-Housewives. So which is it, Kelly? Friends or not?

THOUGHTS ON THE LATEST CASTING DRAMA? WAS BRAVO RIGHT TO AXE ANNIE CHURCHILL? DO YOU WANT TO SEE FRAN DRESCHER MAKE AN APPEARANCE ON HOUSEWIVES? DO YOU BELIEVE KELLY AND JILL ARE FRIENDS OR NOT?

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