Following the major success of Mob Wives, it only makes sense that the VH1 network would expand the series with a spinoff!
Herein comes Mob Wives Chicago, which is set to début this Spring on the network! Even better, VH1 has also released the names and biographies of the five cast members.
The cast is pictured above, via the Chicago Suntimes, from left to right: Leah DeSimone, Renee Fecarotta Russo, Pia Rizza, Christina Scoleri and Nora Schweihs.
The press release states, Mob Wives Chicago will follow “the lives of five women allegedly connected to “The Outfit,” Chicago’s version of the Mob, as they bear the cross for the sins of their Mob-associated fathers. With lives that are right off the pages of a story book, each woman has chosen her own way to live her life in the city that was once home to Al Capone, sometimes in spite of and many times because of who her father is.”
So, what can we expect on this new series? According to VH1, “these women battle their friends, families and each other as they try to do what’s best for themselves and their children. But ultimately, it is the ghost of their fathers they battle, living and dead, as they try to overcome and persevere in the face of these men’s notorious legacies.”
Below are more cast photos and bios of each lady!
TELL US – THOUGHT ON THE CAST? ARE YOU EXCITED ABOUT MOB WIVES CHICAGO?
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Last night’s Basketball Wives was, per the usual, a hot mess of hating on the new girls, horrific dancing, and bad behavior at a charity event. Hmmm, was it a rerun?
The episode begins in Miami, with Evelyn coming over to Tami’s house to visit. Evelyn is so over the infidelity rumors, and Tami totally understands the lifestyle of an athlete, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’s cheating on her. She advises her friend to ignore all the press. Evelyn has tried to tell Chad that the rumors don’t just affect their relationship, they affect their children. Tami is convinced the pair will be happily married in no time.
Evelyn takes the red-eye to New York to meet the new girls with Suzie. Evelyn is keen on Kesha’s style, but she is questioning Kenya’s weave. Kesha can’t get over Suzie’s constant penis references. For Suzie, Evelyn brings up Kenya’s Youtube videos. Evelyn is impressed that Kenya is open to taking down the videos, after hearing that they aren’t sexy or good. Evelyn feels a tad (just a tad) badly about bringing the videos’ suckiness to Kenya’s attention.
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Last night’s Mob Wives was more about tricks than treats, with the women divided between two, that’s right, TWO competing Halloween parties. The horror!
Drita D’avanzo and Carla Facciolo are taking their kids to pick out some pumpkins for Drita’s upcoming Halloween party. Carla thinks it is going to be a fun, drama-free party based on the guest list. Both hope that Renee Graziano will attend, and for a little while she’ll be able to enjoy herself and shake off the funk of Junior going back to jail. Carla and Drita are worried about Renee and all the stress she unnecessarily takes on in her life.
Ramona Rizzo is dining with her friend Lina, who has known her since before she married her now ex-husband. She reveals that she got disowned by her father because she didn’t marry an FBI—full-blooded Italian. Ramona’s first husband was Arabic, and she was hoping that because he was from a different culture, she would be so far removed from the criminal lifestyle. She was wrong about her husband, just like she was wrong about her current boyfriend.
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The ladies of Basketball Wives simply cannot go anywhere without their drama. You might even say they carry it along with them in their purses. Apparently, during a cast trip to Tahiti last month (why are reality show casts always on trips, like they can’t create enough trouble at home?) Tami Roman and newbie Kesha Nichols got into quite the altercation!
We all know Tami does not mince words and mid-way through the trip she apparently called Kesha out on talking behind the girls’ backs. According to TMZ, the two got into an argument and Kesha fearing for her life stormed out! Unfortunately, she left her designer bag behind! Tami decided to hold onto the bag in the hopes that when Kesha came back to retrieve it, they could continue their friendly little chat!
Sadly for Tami, things didn’t go as planned. When Kesha learned Tami had the bag in her room, she realized it was not safe for her to go in there alone and got hotel security involved! Hotel security (presumably also afraid) wanted to call the police over the “theft.” I’m thinking Meeka Claxton gave these people a call and told them what happened in Italy last year!
Producers intervened and convinced Tami to return the bag and Kesha reportedly hopped on the next plane back to the US!
Moving on, Evelyn Lozada still expects us to believe this wedding to Chad Ochocinco is happening. Evelyn insists she’s not a Bridezilla–yet–she just wants everything to be perfect! “It’s Florida in Palm Beach in July and I’m currently busy planning. I don’t have my dress but I have a potential designer,” she dishes.
They are planning to invite about 250 guests and the list has been a “challenge” for Evelyn. “I initially wanted something smaller, but Chad is a big personality and if I leave it up to him he will have animals running around.”
Included in the list, are her castmates, except for one person. Of course, Evelyn can’t get through an interview without mentioning her former bestie Jennifer Williams!
“Jennifer is definitely not invited, it really wouldn’t make sense as she really wasn’t supportive of my relationship from day one,” Evelyn shared with RadarOnline. “I want people who are really, truly happy for us. She never really cared.”
While rekindling things with Jen is not a possibility, starring in an Evelyn and Ocho reality show is! Ugh. “If it works out for the both of us we would do it on TV, there is some interest but nothing is set in stone yet,” Evelyn explained. “The Patriots would let him do that because he wouldn’t be playing then as it would be out of season, coach Bill Belichick is very strict during the season but he wouldn’t be opposed because it’s the off-season.”
“We would probably do a few episodes running up to the wedding and air it outside of Basketball Wives.” Anything for fame these two!
And speaking of The Patriots, Evelyn confesses that Chad took his Superbowl loss pretty hard and the family spent the evening consoling him! “The kids were so torn, it was hard. They wanted to see their dad win so badly,” Evelyn reveals. “After that we literally went to the team hotel and went to the MacDonald’s drive thru and we all sat in the car and spent time with him, and that was our night.” That’s actually pretty sweet.
Finally, Evelyn has been kicking it old school and posting photos of herself back in the day on her website. “It’s Throwback Thursday and I wanted to share a picture of me and my Princess Shaniece. She makes my heart melt! #LoveBeingAMommy,” Evelyn wrote. Also getting into the spirit was Evelyn’s daughter Shaniece, who put some photos of her parents at the hospital when she was born. Very sweet. “Mommy & Daddy #1993,” she captioned the photo. You can see the photos below!
THOUGHTS ON TAMI’S PURSE SNATCH? CRAZY OR NOT SO BAD? DO YOU BELIEVE THE EVELYN AND OCHO WEDDING WILL HAPPEN? WOULD YOU WATCH THEIR REALITY SHOW?
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It’s official. The world is probably about to end. Mob Wives‘ Karen Gravano’s book Mob Daughter, is currently number 18 on the New York Times bestseller list of hardcover nonfiction tomes. I kid, I kid…not about her achievement as an “author” but about the world ending. It can’t. I am still on the first installment of the Hunger Games, so the world is going to have to stick around long enough for me to read Karen’s book. And that could take years. And years.
Unfortunately, as it is with everyone who seeks fame, the backlash comes as quickly as the love. After hearing that some folks are boycotting an upcoming Barnes & Noble appearance to promote her book, SILive.com is reporting that Karen understands the discontent. After all, she’s a victim too, y’all. She claims to be on the same side of those who believe she is profiting off her father (Sammy the Bull)’s bad behavior (to put it mildly).
In an interview with Advance, Karen claims, “I’m on their side. I’ve said they were victims of this lifestyle, and the decisions that our fathers chose.” She continues, “I also lost a [my uncle] to this, so I just think it’s actually insulting at this point that they can sit there and call themselves victims but they don’t consider the loss that I felt — or the things that I went through because my father is Sammy the Bull.”
She’s referring to her father, Salvatore Gravano, who was known as Sammy the Bull. Sammy served as an underboss of the infamous Gambino crime family. He later turned tables and became an informant, sending John Gotti to federal prison until his death. Her book chronicles her life growing up on Staten Island and learning at young age about her father’s crime-spreeing ways.
As for people who think her book profits are blood money, Karen cites that no one seems to blame the Gotti Mafioso for their crimes. She believes her critics are solely focused on her father. She tells Advance, “I’m starting to become a little skeptical. Are they mad that he killed their fathers, or are they mad that [my father] cooperated?”
From there, Karen makes a bit of stretch. I know she probably wasn’t thinking fully about what she was saying, so I’ll give her a pass, but she compared the families of said mobsters to those who suffered on 9/11. If you think I’m wrong, please call me out, but that’s how I took her following statement. She says, “I never said families are not the victims — I will not say the men are victims. The people in 9/11 are victims. When you walk into something like that and you don’t know it’s going to happen, then you’re a victim.”
Karen does concede that her father has gotten what he deserves and is paying his dues. Rightfully, his situation doesn’t cause her to think any less of him. She admits, “I can’t help that I love my father, the same way that they love their fathers,” she said. “All of them chose the wrong path in their lives, the men.”
By “they,” Karen means others in the lifestyle who have profited off books which detail their stories. While she calls them “hypocrites” Karen is quick to state, “I didn’t write this book to have fights with them. I wrote this book to shed light on the life I went through.”
Karen also discusses her three years’ probation after pleading guilty in Arizona to helping her father sell ecstasy. She even claims her father’s past as her reasoning to seek criminal involvement. Karen cites the leniency she received in her youth from law enforcement for being Sammy the Bull’s daughter. That, coupled with the reaction to her father becoming an informant, shaped her behavior.
“I felt like you only get respect when you’re bad,” Karen asserts. “It made me feel like I want to be bad, and I turned my life over to crime.”
She continues, reasoning, “It made me who I am. I know why I made my decisions. I know why I did it. I don’t put blame on anyone else. I didn’t say, ‘I’m going to deal drugs because my father hurt me.’ I’m going to deal drugs because it’s a choice that I made.”
As for her involvement on Mob Wives, she is adamant that the idea for the book came before the show. When asked about the over-the-talk drama we see every Sunday night, Karen explains, “When we do scenes or we do shows where we’re not bickering, people find them boring.”
Furthermore, Karen defends a past comment relating Staten Island to the “breeding ground for the Mafia.” She counters, “That’s what I’ve seen. I didn’t mean the whole entire Staten Island. I think that if anything, we’re not representing a borough, we’re representing ourselves.” Staten Island thanks you for clarifying.
As for her father, Karen is quick to admit that she felt “betrayed and hurt” when he cooperated with the FBI. Her book, she hopes, is about family, saying, “I was looking at it as a little girl whose father just left her.”
Karen hopes that her true supporters will view the book in light of how she has persevered. “How can I take this and spin it into a positive, where it can work for me, instead of against me, for the rest of my life?” Karen ponders.
“I can’t deny who I am,” she continues. “I’m a hustler and if I’m hungry and if there’s food in front of me I’m going to take it and eat it.” And by food, she means Drita.
[Photo Credit: D. Salters/WENN.com]
WHAT DO YOU THINK OF KAREN’S INTERVIEW? IS SHE A VICTIM OR IS SHE PROFITING ON HER FATHER’S WRONGDOING? WILL YOU BE READING HER BOOK?
Holy majoly! On Monday night’s episode of Basketball Wives, it was the conversation heard ’round the world…and by “world” I mean the VH1 following that the show has amassed. Evelyn Lozada takes to her personal blog to address her discussion with Chad Ochocinco regarding his infidelities, seemingly giving him a pass to cheat, as well as dishing on her cast mates–former friend Jennifer Williams in particular.
It’s obvious that Evelyn and Jenn have quite the history, and perhaps (maybe? Just a little?) Evelyn is upset about the downfall of their friendship. She reminds her fans, “You know what’s funny; the fact that Jennifer brought up my daughter is disturbing. I say this because Jennifer doesn’t know the half about being a mother…she isn’t one! Jennifer has been in my daughter’s life since Shaniece was six years old. Recently, she saw my daughter in passing and didn’t say two words to her. With that said, she needs to keep my daughter’s name out of her mouth and I am VERY serious about that.”
Evelyn even wants to clarify a lot of things when it comes to Jenn. “On Jennifer saying that I need to speak to her in a respectful manner, I was VERY calm at the beginning of last week’s scene. How can I talk to her in a respectful manner when she is yelling? I even told her to calm down. How does she even expect me to accept or seem to believe her apology is sincere when she was constantly yelling at me?” She continues, “It truly baffles me that Jennifer can even say that I need to speak to her in a respectful manner when all the while she has been disrespecting me by talking about me publicly. Even Shaunie [O'Neal] and Tami [Roman] could see that she doesn’t get it.”
“One thing that I would like to point out is that Jennifer has been around my brother-in-law and one of my niece’s since birth. Not one time, even when we were cool did she reach out to see how he was or how my family was doing,” Evelyn accuses. She explains, “I know that she and I aren’t cool, but if there were something tragic happening in her family, I would put this entire BS to the side and check on her.” Evelyn further asserts, “And about me being exempt from Jen’s life…no one is worried about Jenn she has been exempt from my life for a while. #BOOM”
Moving on to other cast mates, Evelyn seems to follow the mantra that if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. Who knew she was capable of that? Perhaps her publicist is writing this blog…
Of Kenya [Bell]‘s “music productions”, Evelyn sidesteps the issue, revealing, “No comment on Kenya’s videos…keep watching because I touch on that later.”
Additionally, Evelyn sings Suzie [Ketcham]‘s praises. She says, “I know she receives a lot of flack, but at the end of the day, the show wouldn’t work if it weren’t for Suzie. Suzie is connected to everyone and whether she is messy or not, she is the reason why the show flows. You can be mad at me for saying that, but it’s the honest to God’s truth.” So the reason the show flows is because Suzie desperately goes back and forth among the ladies (I use that term loosely) in hopes of staying on everyone’s good side.
Maybe the most shocking thing Evelyn says on her blog (and mind you, this is a blog where she addresses her one-sided open relationship with Chad) regards her nemesis Royce Reed. She shares, “I really think that acting is Royce’s calling, for some reason something within me tells me that. Royce seems very passionate about acting and I think she will do very well. Not to mention that her hair looked amazing on tonight’s show. Royce at one time judged me last season regarding Chad and I will not judge her for being with a different man this season. However, I’m happy for her and wish her all the best.” Wait, what??? I think I just had a minor stoke reading that! I mean, sure, the statement is passive aggressive, but it includes more than one compliment! Her publicist HAS to be writing this.
Finally, Evelyn addresses her relationship with Chad. She laments, “Are we perfect? Absolutely not, however, we do love each other and are both focused on making this work. I would never involve my daughter nor would he involve his children in something that wasn’t real.”
“I am not condoning Chad for cheating; I am a realist as to the world we live. When your relationship is high profile and publicized like mine, I don’t put anything past anyone. Who is it to say that either one of us will eventually fall into that temptation one day? We don’t know that. My thing is, I want to take my wedding vows and say, we want this to be forever, but you never know. Chad and I are open with communication, we talk all the time and he is a work in progress.” Evelyn reveals, “I am hoping that men and women both can relate to us because there will be temptation, but it takes a strong bond to defeat it.” There is so much wrong with what she’s saying, I can’t even begin to start.
Summing it up, Evelyn professes, “I love Chad, my focus is him and vice-versa and we are going to do this thing and work it out. A lot of times people say you shouldn’t be open with your dude and tell him what you have done in the past and vice-versa, but it works for us, he doesn’t judge me and I don’t judge him. Nobody is perfect it is what it is. I wasn’t looking for Chad, Chad came into my life on Twitter.” Of course he did – it’s almost poetic.
Thank you, Evelyn, for giving me the perfect transition to your recent tweets which seem to condone Chad’s behavior and an open relationship. Her cryptic quotes reference how open the couple’s communication is, as well as pointing out the fact that Evelyn never turned down the threesome. Hmmm….A screen shot of said tweets is below.
Well there you have it, misspellings and all! Who am I to talk…especially in 140 characters or less.
THOUGHTS ON EVELYN’S BLOG? DO YOU THINK SHE’S HURT BY JENN? DO YOU BELIEVE SHE’S TRULY OKAY WITH AN “OPEN” RELATIONSHIP WITH CHAD? ANY COMMENTS ON HER TWEETS?
Last night was the second episode, of the new season, of Basketball Wives. Things are status quo…the new girls are trying to cause just enough drama to get camera time while not alienating everyone right off the bat, Shaunie is barely around (she’s too busy producing), the only thing the women like to talk about are one another, and Suzie is clawing her way up the “popular” ladder.
Shaunie, Tami, and Evelyn meet up to discuss the recent fight between Evelyn and Jennifer. Evelyn touts her two friends as good mediators. Tami believes that Jenn just doesn’t get it, while Shaunie thinks Jenn understood but didn’t want to “punk out.” As far as Evelyn’s concerned, Jenn is lucky she didn’t get punched in the face. All the ladies are trashing Jenn, but Tami and Shaunie are trying to be much more objective than the outspoken Evelyn. While all the ladies agree that Jenn has definitely found her voice, Shaunie thinks she is more reserved around her friends, while, doing more trash talking in the media.
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If we’re talking drama, we must be talking Basketball Wives! In Royce Reed’s VH1 blog from this week, she doesn’t hold back when discussing the other women. And I mean, she REALLY lays it all out on the table.
Speaking of Evelyn Lozada, Royce jokes, “Evelyn is getting married y’all. Yeah, I said it. I’ll admit I thought it was a publationship (that’s a relationship for publicity) but I seriously doubt anyone would get married solely for attention…especially after calling me out about having a blog, a twitter account, etc. when she now has more followers than all of us, tweets that ruin friendships, and a new blog…I’m just saying. I hope she doesn’t eat her words, because I will be serving up a lot of sh*t if I find out it’s fake. With that said, I’ll leave that notion alone and say that I do now believe the relationship is real.” Publationship! I love it!
Moving on, Royce has a sharp tongue when speaking of Suzie Ketcham‘s new bond with Jennifer Williams. “Suzie and Jenn. Seriously? Okay, first of all let’s call a spade a spade. You all are close right now by default. Suzie, you have run your mouth repeatedly and now you wonder why I’m not speaking to you? I said hello when you texted me. I also let you know you were full of sh*t.” She continues, “Everyone saw how pressed you were to become friends with people who could care less and I still had your back. But first time shame on you, second time shame on me. Third time…won’t be a third time… Jenn, sweetie, how are you calling someone immature and friendless? At the end of the day, I’m free and I go home with my pride, my dignity and REAL FRIENDS.” Ouch.
Speaking of her “real friends,” Royce also has some pretty harsh words for buddy, Tami Roman. She writes, “Tami, Tami, Tami…I love you but you had a messy moment. I understand you trying to get Jenn and Evelyn to speak and trying to see where each of their minds are. BUT that’s not where the problem was. The problem was you going back to Jenn and Suzie about our lunch date with Kesha [Nichols] and Kenya [Bell]. You call me out when I’m wrong so now I’m calling you out. That was deadass wrong. There was a different way to say how the first impressions went, but it was delivered all types of messy. Imma give you a pass because…hell…I don’t have a reason, I just am. But next time Imma wear full armor and tell it like it is so when I get popped it won’t hurt. Imma still say it though…” Yowsers.
Finally, Royce doesn’t like to say “I told you so…” but she totally does! She blogs on the Evelyn/Jenn meltdown, stating, “I don’t LIKE to be right about things like this. I just never felt the friendship was as solid or close and it looked to most viewers. I’ve know these women since summer 2009. I’ve seen a lot, heard a lot, but never vocalized much. It wasn’t my place to tell them ‘This friendship is the pits!’ Just from last season it seemed very one-sided and strained. I’ve never really seen them get deep or support each other fully. It always seemed full of side-eyes and judgments. Ten years or not, time doesn’t constitute the title of ‘Best Friend.’ But,again to each their own. Crocodile tears aside, what I DON’T respect is passing off blogs you didn’t write as your own then retracting them and throwing the true author under the bus when you get backlash from it.” Royce certainly doesn’t hold back, does she?
Moving right along, in an exclusive interview with RadarOnline.com, Evelyn discusses the upcoming season, whether her relationship with former bestie, Jenn is salvageable, and Shaunie O’Neal getting into the drama more than usual.
She begins by stating, “I am happy to be with some of the ladies, I’ll say that! I am really good friends with Shaunie O’Neal, we were friends before the show, and Tami Roman.”
Of course, as we all know, 36-year-old Evelyn has had recent discord (to put it mildly) with her former shadow Jennifer. She reveals, “As of now, me and Jennifer are not friends and I don’t think I will ever reconcile the friendship.” Continuing, Evelyn cites Jenn’s ego as a point of contention, “In the first episode they talked about her being ‘bougie,’ when you are that person and you get a little bit of fame, you start believing the hype. She thinks she is better than everyone else.”
Also, on Evelyn’s radar as potential trouble? Newbie Kenya. Of her new castmate, Evelyn claims, “Most of the cast members feel she’s a little strange to say the least. She’s not really someone I would hang out with after filming, she’s not my type of person.”
Evelyn admits that she is a fan of the other newcomer, Kesha Nicols. She says, “Kesha always remained herself and didn’t change, she wasn’t trying to do anything to make her mark on the show, but with Kenya she is not being herself and tries really hard to fit in. When you come into a fourth season, you smell B.S. from far away. It’s best to be yourself, that’s why I took a liking to Kesha. She is a really sweet girl and always seems like she is the same person on and off of the set.”
Of course, Evelyn doesn’t think she’ll have to put up with Kenya for long, stating, “I think her fakeness could definitely be Kenya’s demise.”
Or, could her demise be the Queen Bee herself, producer Shaunie O’Neal? Evelyn hints, “Shaunie actually gets into a conflict with one the cast mates, she’s usually quiet and stays out of the mess. She did have an issue with one of the ladies on the show, and I think viewers will be surprised that she voiced that and who that person ended up being.”
Evelyn admits that living in the spotlight can be hard at times, admitting, “I have my moments, sometimes you may say something and then look at it after filming and regret it. We all have those moments. I would have told Jennifer never to talk to me again, but that doesn’t make sense on the show because there are cameras here and you have to tell the story even if it can be frustrating.”
Of course, Evelyn wants to stay out of the drama (sure she does) and focus on her upcoming nuptials to New England Patriots player Chad Ochocinco, exclaiming, “We’re getting married this summer in Florida – I can’t believe it’s just a few months away!”
Essence.com has the photographs from a recent wedding spread for which Evelyn posed. See pics of her bridal photo shoot below! A new episode of Basketball Wives airs tonight on VH1 at 8PM ET.
WHAT DID YOU THINK OF ROYCE’S BLOG? TOO HARSH OR JUST HONEST? COMMENTS ON EVELYN’S INTERVIEW AND PHOTO SHOOT?
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