Above is a photo of firedReal Housewives of New York City BFFs Kelly Kra-kra Bensimon andJill Zarin as the two met up today ( October 5, 2011) for the first time since their firing from RHONY a few weeks ago. The ladies, who surely didn’t invite the paparazzi for this private moment, gave each other a big hug and kiss before doing lunch in NYC.
Below, Bethenny Frankel steps out with baby Bryn, Real Housewives of NYC stars Ramona Singer, Countess Luann, & Sonja Morgan step out! Kelly Bensimon becomes a crossing guard, Gretchen Rossi and Slade Smiley attend an event, Lisa Vanderpump hangs in Beverly Hills, plus photos of Kandi Burruss, Phaedra Parks, Adrienne Maloof, Rachel Zoe& more!
Also below, Kim Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian, plus Kate Gosselin, Kristin Cavallari, Kendra Wilkinson & more!
Photo credit: Lawrence Schwartzwald / SPLASH
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After mostly keeping her comments to herself, LuAnn de Lesseps is finally throwing all that etiquette stuff out the window and as one of the only remaining originals of Real Housewives of New York, she is speaking out on the firings and the future of the show!
Get ready – it’s juicy!
In an exclusive interview with OK!, LuAnn publicly admits she is disappointed by who Bravo decided to fire, specifically Jill Zarin, but she is excited to still be included in the show! “I was happy because I wanted to do the next season, and sad at the same time, because Jill’s the one who initially started the show with me, and is the one who brought me onto the show,” she reveals.
“I really felt bad that she wasn’t coming back. And Kelly [Bensimon]– I’m going to miss the girls, I really am, but I’m excited about the new season and missing the girls. I have great memories with all the women. We made that show what it was from the beginning,” LuAnn muses, waxing nostalgic. Hey, at least one person will be mourning for Jill!
And since she is on a roll, LuAnn continues by reiterating that she’ll really miss Jill! Like a lot. LuAnn, you guys can still do things outside the show. “We’re like a weird, sick family,” she says of relationships to her former co-stars. “Jill and I started the show together with Ramona and Alex. Kelly came on later, but It’s really sad to see them go because it’s something we created and made successful together.”
If you noticed LuAnn has not mentioned Alex McCord being part of the “family,” it’s because LuAnn still hates her! “There was no reason [for her to attack me],” LuAnn quips referring to the argument after Morocco and other comments Alex has made about her in the press. Also noting that she also does not feel bad that Alex was fired.
As for the new cast, LuAnn is “looking forward to the new season,” except for one thing: Ramona Singer! “Ramona is Ra-mean-a,” LuAnn explains. “I see Ramona, and I run the other direction!”
LuAnn hasn’t seen Pinot Singer since the reunion and that’s fine with her! “She invited me to her party and I’m like ‘hello? Come on. Really?! You say that to me, and you expect me to show up and say ‘hi’?’ No. Not after you go after my kids.”
And a furious LuAnn then makes some jabs about Ramona’s drinking habits, after expressing that she is still (yes, STILL!) disappointed that Ramona declined to be in her music video for Chic C’est La Vie! “Turtle Time, Pinot Grigio – but that grossed me out.”
“There’s part of her I love and part of her I hate,” LuAnn continues. “She says the damndest things – it rolls out of her mouth, and she thinks she can get away with it. She’s not going to get away with it, because it’s ‘on’ for the next season,” LuAnn challenges.
As for a very re-vamped Season Five, according to LuAnn filming begins soon! “I’m really excited about the upcoming season, and I will look forward to the girls.” The expected new cast members are Carole Radziwill,Heather Thomson, andAviva Drescher.
Well, the next season better be an improvement over last year, especially considering the pay raise Ramona and LuAnn allegedly received! the Huffington Post is reporting that Bravo inked a contract with LuAnn and Ramona (who let’s be frank, really know how to bring the dramz and the snippy comments) paying them a whopping $500,000 each to film Season Five!
“In the fourth season, LuAnn, Ramona, Jill and Alex all earned $275,000 for 16 regular episodes plus a one-day reunion taping that was shown as two episodes. “So in total it was $275,000 for a total of 18 episodes,” an insider states. “But now that Jill and Alex have been fired, LuAnn and Ramona are getting $500,000 to tape 18 episodes. That’s almost $28,000 an episode.” Come again?!
The reason for Bravo upping the ante? “Nothing causes drama more than asking all the ladies to do the same amount of work and paying some more for it than others,” one of the real housewives themselves reveals!
“Sonja [Morgan] and the new ladies are not earning anything like the money LuAnn and Ramona are and that is already causing tension — plus, a very unlikely friendship between past enemies LuAnn and Ramona,” the housewife insider details. Perhaps LuAnn and Ramona got together in the contract negotiation process! “It’s way too early to know how all this is going to play out, but early meetings have gone great!”
Bravo declined to comment on the upcoming season and the alleged pay raises, but I wouldn’t put it past them to resort to unscrupulous measures to cause drama (See: New Jersey, Housewives, “Real”)!
Thoughts on LuAnn’s interview and comments about Ramona? Obsessed with Jill, much? Are you as surprised as I am that Ramona and LuAnn will be earning half a Mil to be part of RHONY?
And while LuAnn will “really miss Jill,” she is optimistic about the new ladies. “I’m excited about the new cast,” although she hasn’t actually met any of her new co-stars. If they are all friends with Ramona Singer, I predict a rocky fifth season for our favorite ex-countess!
And speaking of exes, ex-housewife Alex McCord and ex-hanger-on Simon van Kempen are finally moving forward after getting terminated! In a shocking interview with the NY Post, Simon admits the duo was out of place among their castmates (yes, I read it twice to make sure I wasn’t seeing things). “Alex and I were always miscast in the show,” he confesses. “And if [Bravo] is taking it to the ‘Beverly Hills’ level of money, of course we wouldn’t be on.” Wow… refreshing honesty, Simon!
As for the rumors that the McCord-Van Kempens begged Bravo for their jobs back, even willing to take a 50% pay cut out of their $275,000 salary, Simon calls the gossip “100 percent not true,” which was also confirmed by a Bravo rep (a very reliable source, if I’ve ever heard one!).
“Once we had a no, it was no,” Simon explains. “That would’ve just perpetuated the perception we are the wannabes they made us out to be.” Wait – Bravo made them look like wannabes? #Idontbelieveyou.
“We’re sad it’s not continuing. But four years wasn’t bad,” Simon concludes. Good attitude Silex! The two reveal they are now focusing on a line of Egyptian-cotton towels and bedding, called Aluxe, which they plan to launch this week.
It also appears the firing of Silex isn’t preventing Ramona from contuining to hang out with Alex. Ramona posted the following photo below of herself hanging out with Alex over the weekend. Ramona wrote on her facebook today: “Morning! How was everyone’s weekend? Mine was great. Ended it last night celebrating Alex’s birthday!”
Gossip columnist Rob Shuter tweeted that filming on the new season of RHONY officially begins today. You can CLICK HERE to read all about the new housewives!
Are you surprised LuAnn will miss Jill? Did any of you attend the Housewives Live Tour – thoughts? Are you impressed with Silex’s new attitude?
If you recall, the Bravo network announced the first ever Housewives tour back in August and Jill was scheduled to headline the October 15 date in Atlanta alongside Nene Leakes, Melissa Gorga and Marysol Patton.
When Bravo announced the tour back then, many assumed it meant Jill would be a sure thing for the Real Housewives of New York City season 5! But as we all learned, that was not the case. Days after Bravo finally confirmed the firings, Jill, 48, made it clear she would no longer be a part of the tour. Not a fan of Jill’s but I must say I actually see her point of view in this. Really, who wants to do PR for the company that just publicly fired them?
So it’s a surprise today that Alex, who was also fired by Bravo, is more than happy to take Jill’s spot! In a statement to UsWeekly, Alex, 37, cites her “close relationship” with Bravo as her reason for having no pride doing the tour!
“I have a close relationship with Bravo and when they asked me to step in I was happy to accept,” Alex states. “The audience coming to see The Real Housewives Live Tour want to know about the past and our experience of filming and being a ‘Real Housewife’ on Bravo TV. With four seasons under my belt, I have plenty to say about that subject! The live show format is similar to a tour I did with the New Jersey ladies a few years ago, and we had a lot of fun doing it.”
In other RHONY news, non-fired housewife who really should have been fired Countess LuAnn de Lesseps reportedly fell off a table while dancing.
According to the NY Post, Countess Lulu took a Snooki-style tumble during a birthday party over the weekend at the uptown restaurant Desmond’s. Apparently, Lulu heard her song come on – Katy Perry’sLast Friday Night – during which she decided to do some table dancing. Unfortunately for the Countess, she ended taking a fall and cutting her knee.
The Post doesn’t state whether or not the Countess was inebriated. This isn’t however the first time there has been a report of the Countess acting wild in public. Here’s to hoping the Bravo cameras will be around to capture it all next time!
Photo credit: WENN
TELL US – THOUGHTS ON ALEX AGREEING TO DO THE TOUR AFTER BEING FIRED? DESPERATE OR OKAY?
While appearing on Sunday night’s season premiere of Watch What Happens Live an unedited Patti spouted off about how gays can’t be monogamous and Jewish men lie as a shocked Andy Cohen (who is both gay and Jewish) seemed visibly appalled! And after that little episode I foresee a “cancelled” notice in her future…
When a caller asked about open relationships Patti, who has long been an advocate for monogamy with the couples she’s matched, informed him that, “In the gay world, there’s always going to be open [relationships].” Then when the caller confirmed that he was gay, she actually advocated he pursue open relationships telling him, “Ok, well then you’re ok. There’s Grindr [the online site that connects gay/bisexual men in the same area] for you. Go on Grindr. You’ll have a great time.” Well, I’m sure Grindr ummmm… appreciated the free press!
When a shocked Andy asked: “So wait, the gays can have open relationships?” Patti retorted with: “There’s no curbing the gay!” She continued, explaining: “I’ve tried to curb you people and you just don’t [change]. I’ve decided to throw in the towel and just say, ‘Do what you want. But when you find the right person, you will know.'”
Andy argued back that as a gay man he wants a monogamous relationship, but Patti bit the hand that feeds her, by laughing in his face and demanding to know “When was the last time you had a [serious] boyfriend?” Maybe Patti is upset that Andy fired her bestie Jill Zarin, or something…
Patti continued her barrage of insults aimed at the gay community when she expressed surprise that a gay viewer who spoke to Andy and Patti via Skype was cute, offering this gem:. “First of all, you’re very handsome. I thought you were straight,” she said. “That’s a compliment!”
A confused Andy, wanted to know how that was a compliment and Patti – who really needs a muzzle big time – answered: “Because he’s not queeny. Like you want a queen.” Oh, poor Andy, he looked so distraught!
Patti also defamed the Jewish community when she declared that “Jewish men lie.” Perhaps she’s had some sort of negative experience in that department, but to slander an entire group – a little harsh.
After facing some serious heat for her comments, Patti took to the Twitterz to set the record straight! “Attention male gays: I support you and my comment on [Watch What Happens Live] was to an L.A. guy who can’t find commitment.”
Patti apologized for her offensive remarks, telling US Weekly, “I am so sorry. I did not mean to offend anyone with my comments last night on Watch What Happens Live.” As for Bravo, the network made it clear they do not share the views expressed by Patti with the following statement: “Her comments are not representative of the network’s beliefs and opinions. We apologize for the offense it caused.”
Patti’s comments were even more surprising given that she’s always been an advocate for the gay community – even appearing in a NoH8 campaign. But don’t worry, Patti’s not just giving the gays bad dating advice! Appearing on New York Live she accused single, Manhattan women of being too smart to find a man! And encouraged them to skip talking about their academic accomplishments or using big words if they want to wear a big white dress!
“They don’t like them before they are married,” Patti explained, referring to men not wanting to date intelligent women! “You’ve got to dumb it down a little because men are not that bright.” Oh, Patti… seriously? 1950 called… Now here’s the real question do think this woman has ever made a successful match?
And on last night’s WWHL, Andy rightfully named Patti the Jackhole of the week!
In addition to the latest fiasco, the ratings for Patti’s show have continued to decline. In fact, the episode that aired last Thursday only garnered 809,000 viewers. In comparison, Flipping Out averaged 1.3 million viewers for its most recent season. We have to wonder whether Patti’s days on Bravo are now numbered…
Do you think Patti was serious or joking with her comments? Were you offended by Patti’s remarks? Do you think this incident may result in Bravo canceling Millionaire Matchmaker?
While Kelly Bensimon and Cindy Barshop have been relatively silent about not being asked to return, Jill Zarin pretends to take the high road with humble PR statements hocking her shapewear, Skweez Couture.
Silex recently sat down with Andrea Canning for an interview with GMA to discuss the firings, the show, and of course, the other ladies. When asked if the couple was upset about the recent shake-up, Alex responds, “You never want it to be someone else’s decision that you’re not coming back.”
Alex also gets a tad defensive when questioned about her pot-stirring ways on the recent season. She counters, “[The show] has gotten more and more toxic. People saying I create drama to stay relevant is a defense mechanism on their part.” Alex continues, “I call out people’s bad behavior, and I’ve gotten louder and louder about that.”
In regard to their former co-stars who have also been pink-slipped, Silex has a lot to say. As to Cray-Cray Kelly, Alex states the obvious, saying “It’s hard to be on a reality show if you’re not in touch with reality.”
As for resident mean girl Jill, Alex and Simon believe she is the cause of the couple’s reality show demise.
Alex believes that Jill “has been trying to get me off the show for a number of years. She succeeded…She’s a manipulator and she’s very good at feeding information to her own end.” Jill’s alleged cyber-bullySimon believes Zarin is a flawed woman. He adds, “Jill sometimes is still very much stuck in junior high as the girl who was unpopular, who was bullied. And 30 years later, she’s still there.”
Jill felt the need to release a statement to Good Morning America in response to the couple’s accusations. She replies, “I just feel pity for them using me for press yet again.” Condescending? Check. Passive Aggressive? Check. Mean girl snark? Check. Yup, I’d say Jill wrote that herself.
In another statement (because in Jill’s world one is never enough) Jill her “rep” states, “Alex and Simon’s allegations represent the type of negativity that Jill is eager to move on from. Jill will continue to take the high road and wish Alex and Simon nothing but the best.” That is so sweet of her…and totes sincere! The statement continues, “While it is easy to play the blame game, it is our hope that Alex and Simon will eventually accept Bravo’s decision and proceed with grace to the next stage in their career rather than hold on to past resentments.”
Wait, did I miss something? Where is Jill’s shameless self-promotion? Oh, yeah. Just one more thing…wrapping it all up with a nice little bow, Jill’s rep concludes, “As Jill proceeds with optimism, she is grateful to Bravo for a successful 4 year run on The Real Housewives of New York City and is focused on the national launch of her shapewear line, Skweez Couture at Lord and Taylor.” There it is!
Don’t be too concerned for Silex though, as they are going to be super busy with their new bedding and bath line, Aluxe Home. According to Alex, “Building a company is always better than bickering with ladies.” As for Simon, he knows that things will be fine, just as long as they are together. He gets emotional, saying, “We are a great team, and we are still madly, passionately in love.” Can I get a collective AWWWWWW?
DO YOU THINK SILEX SHOULD QUIETLY ACCEPT THEIR BRAVO FATE? IS JILL TO BLAME FOR GETTING THEM OFF THE SHOW? WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE SILEX CONTINUE IN REALITY TELEVISION?
It’s the firing that will never end as former housewives, current housewives, and wannabe housewives again continue to talk and talk some more about Bravo’s decision to re-cast the Real Housewives of New York!
Unable to accept that Bravo no longer wants to film their silly basement office, E! is reporting that former housewives Alex McCordandSimon Van Kempen are pleading with the network to re-hire them!
“Basically, they’ve been begging to stay on,” a source asserts. “Simon questions how he can ‘harness the swell of support’ behind them.” That “swell of support” is, I imagine, the messages and Tweets from fans questioning Bravo’s decision to cut them from the cast.
“They’re not accepting that it’s done,” the source continues. “They are meeting with Bravo this afternoon and Bravo doesn’t want them on the show, but Andy would like them to pop up occasionally, whether on Housewives or other programs on the network is what they’re saying.” Well, that’s sort of promising…
Alex actually confirmed the meeting with Bravo took place yesterday (Thursday) but claims they are not begging to get back on the show. She Tweeted: “Oy oy oy! Just to clarify, yes we have had meetings at Bravo. No we didn’t ask to be reinstated. Is that clear enough? 😀 #GossipvsFact.”
And FINALLY Kelly Kra-kra Bensimon has acknowledged that she was fired! Whew – I was getting worried she had completely ignored the memo! On her most recent blog (posted today, actually), Kelly addressed leaving the show with the following statement: “To all the Real Housewives of New York Fans and Viewers, I’m so grateful for the overwhelming support I’ve received from all of you. I hope you enjoyed my run on the show. Stay tuned for I’m just getting started.” Well, it’s not much but at least we have confirmation that she understands she shouldn’t show up to film!
As for Jill Zarin, she is shockingly taking the high road (so far) after receiving the news. Do you think Bravo issued a gag order? Jill has been focusing on her family life and her careers outside of Housewives, but a source reveals: “She still feels a little betrayed. Jill knew Carole [Radziwill] was coming on the show, but she never knew she was being thrown off. She’s grateful for what Bravo did for her, but feels they just tossed her aside.”
And since no major shake-up of RHONY would be complete without Bethenny Frankel’s two-cents, she told E! she’s “not surprised” by Bravo’s decision to fire her former bffl, among others -like that blonde woman she used as the messenger to bury her friendship with said bffl!
“I’m not surprised only because it’s been the same cast for so many years and Bravo…likes to make changes,” the Bethenny Ever After star remarked of the casting shake-up. “They probably just felt like it was time for a change. People do that in relationships, they do that in work strategy. I don’t think it’s personal. I think it’s really just business.”
“The girls are probably a little nervous and scared, because it’s change,” she said, commenting on how her former co-workers might be taking the news that they’ll have to start collecting unemployment. “It can be lucrative when you get a lot of attention, but I also think it’s very tiring. They’ll get to relax a little more and not be scrutinized all the time.”
Bethenny also talks her own decision to leave the show, and unlike previous interviews when she described the show as rewarding bad behavior, this time she claims to have seen the writing on the wall. “I did leave on top,” she admits.
“It was all very planned out. I knew this was the type of place you don’t want to overstay your welcome. I always say, ‘You don’t want to be the one in the nightclub at two in the morning where everyone looks pretty scary.’”
Photo credit: PR Photos
Do you think Silex has a chance of convincing Bravo to re-add them to the show? Thoughts on Bethenny’s comments regarding her decision to leave?
For those of you who thought you’d never hear from Jill Zarin again following her departure from Real Housewives of New York, you’re out of luck! Jill is all over the place: in the news, in Lord & Taylor, in some of our undergarments… the drama never ends with the red-headed mama.
In the latest installment of the Jill Zarin gossip brigade, Ramona Singer was possibly the driving force behind Bravo kicking Jill off RHONY!
A source reveals to UsWeekly that Ramona “came to Bravo with a few pals she thought would make good additions. Bravo decided to go with the new girls and not Jill, so Ramona basically ran her off the show.” It has been widely reported that the three new castmates are Carole Radziwill, Heather Thomson, andAviva Drescher. However none of the women are mentioned as being friends or acquaintances of Ramona.
Speaking to The Insider’s Christina McLarty about leaving the show, Jill confirms that Bravo wanted to go with different women. “The what happened is such a long answer,” Jill comments, rolling her eyes, “but basically we were not picked up. The show has gone in a different direction; they’ve added other girls.”
Jill was even more honest in her interview with GMA yesterday regarding the firing. “It was a little jolting. I’ll be honest,” said Jill referring to the call she received last week from Bravo executives confirming that she had been fired. “It didn’t feel good,” she added. “Nobody likes to not be asked back to the party.”
Jill also added that she’s not done with television and is in talks with a variety of networks concerning different projects, although she cannot give any further details at this time.
Ramona denies that she had anything to do with the network firing Jill; explaining “”We can recommend people to come to the show, but it’s not my decision.”
Another insider reveals the remaining ladies will NOT miss Jill. “Jill caused a lot of problems,” an insider reveals. “Her castmates were upset with her, since she’d tweet all these negative things. Karma’s a bitch.”
Thoughts on everyone’s comments? Are you surprised Jill was honest in admitting she was fired? Do you believe Ramona had something to do with Jill getting the axe?