Category: Real Housewives of Atlanta

'Real Housewives' offer makeovers on 'Maury'

Staub Over on “Maury,” the paternity tests are getting a break.

Taking a breather from the baby daddy drama, veteran TV host Maury Povich is enlisting the help of a few “Housewives” with another pastime of the longstanding talk show: makeovers.

In the episode, to air Thursday,  Danielle Staub ("Real Housewives of New Jersey"), Ramona Singer ("Real Housewives of New York City") and NeNe Leakes ("Real Housewives of Atlanta") will help transform a few disheveled “real” housewives into moms worthy of being followed around by cameras.

Hmm. Images of knee-high boots with broken heels, age-inappropriate skirts and revealing tops are dancing in our heads.  

Show Trackers,  do you think these were the right “Housewives” to help with the makeovers?

--Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: Danielle Staub. Credit: Getty Images.

'Real Housewives' coming to KNBC

Housewives_OC Desperate for more “Housewives”?

The manicured ladies of the “The Real Housewives” are bringing their rich and famously drama-filled lifestyles to syndication. As O.C. “Housewife” Vicki Gunvalson might say, “Wahoo!”

NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution sold "The Real Housewives" of Orange County, New York and Atlanta to stations from NBC Local Media, Hearst Television and other leading broadcast groups in the nation's top markets.

Starting Monday, Sept. 13, L.A.-based fans can re-live the antics five days a week, beginning with the first five seasons of O.C., on KNBC (Ch. 4) at 3 p.m.

--Yvonne Villarreal

Photo credit: Bravo

Pilot View: Logo's 'The A-List: New York' inspires lots and lots of exercising

Wednesday night, we spent a little time with the rich and gaymous, which is to say we watched the first episode of Logo's new reality series "The A-List: New York."

You may know this show by its nickname, "Gay Housewives."  It was once titled "Kept," which we really liked.

Produced by True Entertainment ("The Real Housewives of Atlanta"), the series follows "boys who brunch" in New York City. But these are no ordinary brunching boys. They're members of Manhattan's gay elite, and the show follows their exploits from "boardroom to benefit to beach house to bedroom."  (Those are quotes from a charming Logo news release.)

And did we say they're all gorgeous? Do not make the mistake of ordering Mexican takeout before you watch the first episode. Trust us. Along with beauty, there's plenty of bitchiness, of course.

The blogosphere has been reacting strongly to the trailer you can watch above, which Logo released this week. Perez Hilton was beside himself. Others woo-hooed.

We think "The A List" could become an addiction.

Because we don't want to ruin the fun, we won't spoil the first episode. But we'd like to introduce the men by way of things they told us about themselves in the pilot:

SHOT_04_161_silo_LCROPPED-1 Reichen Lehmkuhl

Bragging rights: "My claim to fame is that I won 'The Amazing Race" and I was in a very public relationship with Lance Bass. And then through being seen together, he was kind of forced out of the closet and it still follows me around. But I don't like that to represent me."

Hot button: "I am afraid that people are going to laugh at my dancing." (He starred in "My Big Italian Gay Wedding" off Broadway).


SHOT_04_058_silo_LCROPPED2 Mike Ruiz

Bragging rights: "My claim to fame is that I transform celebrities. What I do is I take them out of context and style-wise just change them and present them in a way that's jarring to the general public. I would have to say that I'm probably one of the most in-demand celebrity photographers in the world."

Hot button: "Vanity is subjective. I have a healthier relationship with my appearance. I'm not 21 anymore, so I like to take care of myself. I need to stay on top of things. Otherwise things start falling apart really fast. I like to take care of myself and look attractive for my partner and attractive for, you know, everyone. Yes, yes, I'm vain. I'm guilty."

SHOT_04_047_silo_LCROPPED Ryan Nickulas

Bragging rights: "I own one of the top downtown salons. On any given day, you can come into my salon and run into Pamela Anderson, Isaac Mizrahi and Rachael Ray."

Hot button: "Desmond is my Mr. Big. Not that I'm really Carrie Bradshaw, but he's definitely my Mr. Big."


Austin Armacost

Bragging rights: "My biggest claim to fame would have to be the time I spent with famed designer Marc Jacobs. Our friendship led to a relationship. And then Marc swooped me away into his world that is all luxury and glamour. And I loved it. I just didn't know how to handle it."

Hot button: "Every time my name is mentioned, I want Marc's name to be nonexistent."


SHOT_04_123_silo_LCROPPED Derek Lloyd Saathoff

Bragging rights: "I never have to wait behind a velvet rope. My name is on every VIP list in the city. I'm friends with Lindsay Lohan. She stays at my apartment when she's in New York. Seann William Scott is a close friend of mine. I'm photographed and written about in blogs, in magazines. If you're reading about me on Monday morning, it was a fierce weekend."

Hot button: "I'm obsessed with spray tanning. If I look in the mirror and I see a pale face, I instantly shriek. I'm like 'AHH, I have to spray tan.' It's instant. No one sees me without it. It's almost like putting on your face. Girls wake up and put on makeup. I wake up and put on a spray tan."

SHOT_04_098_silo_LCROPPED Rodiney Santiago (Reichen's boyfriend)

Bragging rights as told by Reichen: "Rodiney is a model. He's done really well in Brazil, in Miami, and L.A. And now he wants to establish himself as a model in New York. And that's really hard to do."

Hot button: "Reichen is working all day, and I feel kind of alone, by myself here. And I have to figure out everything by myself. ... Do you think I'm going to find some agents here? Do you think it's going to be easy?"

No, it's not. But neither is all the working out we're going to have to do while this show is on the air. Incidentally, it premieres Oct. 4.

Special request for Logo: Can T.J. (Ryan's best friend) be added as a lead? We love it when he says "delicious."

--Maria Elena Fernandez

Photos credit: Logo

Video credit: Logo

Meet the newest additions to 'The Real Housewives of Atlanta'

Feeling like there’s a “Real Housewives” void in your life? If you answered yes, we can’t help but shake our heads in disbelief. Hello! Bravo is currently offering two nights of the popular franchise. But for those who simply can’t wait for more wig pulling, you can breathe a sigh of relief: Bravo announced Thursday that the third season of "The Real Housewives of Atlanta" will return Monday, Oct. 4, at 9 p.m. ET/PT. But not every “Housewife” will be making the party.

That’s right. As rumored earlier this summer, Lisa Wu Hartwell is no longer part of the reality series. Maybe she’s banking on a movie career? She shot a film called “Black Ball” and is reportedly going to start production on another movie opposite … Robert Downey Jr.? Say what? But Kandi, Kim, NeNe and Sheree are back, and they’ll be joined by model Cynthia Bailey and entertainment lawyer Phaedra Parks.

Alabama-born Bailey, a model who worked the runways of Paris and Milan (not in one of Sheree's fashion shows, though), is on the brink of Splitsville with her boyfriend of three years, Peter Thomas, after he issues her an ultimatum. She seeks comfort from NeNe, a close friend whom we’ll see also struggle as tension arises in her marriage. Did we mention she once had a guest spot on “The Cosby Show”?

And Parks causes a stir with her arrival. Her marriage to a younger husband, Apollo, sparks gossip because of his prison stint for a “white-collar crime.” Wowza. Oh, and she is expecting her first child.

The other ladies, as expected,are up to their same ol' shenanigans ... and even some new ones.

Continue reading »

A Times investigation finds few legal safeguards for kids on reality TV shows


After a month-long public records investigation, Times staff writers Matea Gold and Richard Verrier found that dozens of children are appearing on reality television shows without legal safeguards because of widespread confusion among state regulators about how to classify the shows.

In its examination of some of the most visible series featuring children under 16, The Times found that a majority had not obtained work permits to employ minors — including TLC's "19 Kids and Counting," WE TV's "Raising Sextuplets" and the entire "Real Housewives" franchise on Bravo.

Because producers say that the kids on their programs are participants, not employees, child labor laws are rarely applied. As a result, for the vast majority of these shows, there are no state-mandated instructors or union representatives on set to limit the number of hours the children are on camera, to make sure they get meal breaks and go to school, or to prevent exposure to dangerous situations. Most reality show children are not guaranteed that they will be compensated or that any money they do earn will be set aside for them.

After inquires from The Times, state agencies in California, Florida, Georgia and Virginia are looking into whether production companies violated child labor laws while filming in their states.

Read the full story here: Reality TV kids don't have a legal safety net

-- Matea Gold

Photo: Jim Bob Duggar, who appears with his family on TLC's "19 Kids And Counting," told The Times that they do not consider the filming work. Credit: TLC

Season 2 of "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" returns on a new night

Real_housewives_of_new_jersey Long before Snooki and her poof pièce de résistance were a television powerhouse, the ladies of “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” were bringing the drama from the mid-Atlantic region to the small screen. Now the Jersey Girls, er, Women, are back for a brand new season on a brand new night.

Flip the channel — not your table — to Bravo on Mondays, starting at 10 p.m. May 3, if you can’t get enough “bubbies” or if you just want to catch up with sisters Caroline and Dina, their sister-in-law Jacqueline, family friend Teresa and the delightfully wacky Danielle.

For a sneak peak of Season 2 — which sees both Jacqueline and Teresa having babies and a persistent Danielle still fighting her way into the inner circle — click here.

-- Yvonne Villarreal

Photo credit: Bravo

Bravo adds another night of original programming

A fifth night of original programming is coming soon to Bravo, which means several of your favorites will be back as well as a couple of new series, the network announced Wednesday.

The new shows, as listed in a Bravo press release are:

"The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills": The franchise heads to the glamorous city that defines luxurious wealth and pampered privilege, a city where being seen and who you know are everything. This one-hour docu-series is being produced by Evolution Media ("The Real Housewives of Orange County").

"Miami Social Club": This docu-series follows Miami's social elite -- a glamorous circle where money, hard work, status and beauty rule. MC Filmworks is producing this series and the title is tentative.

"Million Dollar Decorators":  Explore the work and personal lives of some of L.A.'s hottest high-end interior decorators as they navigate a world where millions of dollars and massive egos are constantly on the line. Goodbye Pictures is producing it.

"Pregnant in Heels": Rosie Pope has managed to create a thriving business as the owner/designer of Rosie Pope Maternity, the ultra high-end maternity brand for the most sophisticated and urban mothers-to-be. Rosie -- the tough talking, straight-shooting coach for the most privileged expecting mothers of Manhattan -- advises her clients on everything from planning baby showers and hiring staff to decorating nurseries and organizing Brazilian waxing for the labor room. Shout Media is producing this series.

Bravo is also developing a docu-series following "So You Think You Can Dance" Emmy-winning choreographer Mia Michaels; an international food competition series; and a Darren Star-produced musical drama following a straight, married affluent power broker in New York who leads a double life as a drag queen.

The returning series include: "The Fashion Show 2," "Million Dollar Listing 4," "The Real Housewives of Atlanta 3," and "Tabatha's Salon Takeover 3."

-- Maria Elena Fernandez (follow me on Twitter @writerchica)

Will Kim Zolciak and NeNe Leakes return for Season 3 of 'The Real Housewives of Atlanta'?

Nene Do you hear that? It’s what a world sans the incessant play of “Tardy for the Party” might sound like. Oh, the horror!  But that could be the case with reports that Kim Zolciak and NeNe Leakes will not be returning for a third season of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta.”

A source recently told the New York Daily News that the pair, who seem to have an on-again/off-again friendship, want more money to appear on the show than Bravo is willing to fork over and that producers are looking to replace the “domestic” divas.

"Bravo has been taking meetings with some notable and wealthy Atlanta women about possibly joining the show," a source told the Daily News. "They're trying their best to keep the process under wraps, but they're gearing up to make a major move in the third season."

Bravo’s only comment to Show Tracker was that “no decisions about Season 3 have been made yet.”

Until then, get your “Tardy for the Party” fix here.

So Show Trackers, will you keep tuning in if the reports are true?

-- Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: NeNe Leakes. Credit: Bravo


Has 'The Real Housewives of Atlanta' star Nene Leakes become a villain?

The new faces on "The Real Housewives of New York City"

Bravo picks up "The Real Housewives of D.C.," orders second helping of  "New Jersey"

'Real Housewives of Atlanta': Reunited and it feels so good? Part Deux

I had such high hopes. Last year's Atlanta reunion was so epic, it almost made surpassing it impossible -- even with the Kim's horrid and off-kilter lip-synching of "Tardy for the Party." No amount of wigs -- real or synthetic -- could save it. Though the soured looks on NeNe's and Lisa's faces during Kim's performance offered a good chuckle. (I hope Bravo has plans to tape that "future" performance that NeNe so begrudgingly accepted to sing backup on.)

Here's a rundown of this week's continuation of the Atlanta reunion:

We learned that NeNe is reviewing scripts and chatting it up with Oprah's bestie, Gayle King? Is a cover of O magazine in the works? Demi and Ashton are fans (further proof that stars are just like us!); Kim denied being a stripper, insisting she was simply a waitress at the Cheetah and got good tips. And, let us not forget, fashion divo Dwight, it was revealed, has had a penile implant. Wow. TMI. Moving on, as Kim would say...

Just as last week, Kim's quick attempt to keep clear of controversy made the reunion frustrating. Does she really think Sheree was trying to "shift her wig a little bit"?

And Dwight's inclusion in the special gave Lisa another opportunity to get heated over his criticisms of her "Closet Freak" fashion show -- though she now claims it wasn't exactly a typical fashion show. Confused? Ditto. And Dwight wasn't apologetic. But Lisa had the guts to point out something I've been yelling at my TV all season: "Where's your clothing line?"

Leave it to Kandi to keep things real; she performed her single "Fly Above" in honor of her late ex-fiance A.J. 

What did you think of the reunion special? Worth two episodes? Have you been YouTube-ing Kim's performance since the credits started rolling? Who do you want to see return if there's another season? And who do you want to see gone?

--Yvonne Villarreal

"Real Housewives of Atlanta': The manicured claws are out

Real_housewives_atlanta All good things must come to an end. Thursday marked the season finale of the "Real Housewives of Atlanta" … Say it isn’t so!

What would an episode be without a reference to Sheree’s long-overdue fashion show? With the “who’s who of Atlanta” awaiting her debut (um, sure), Sher — er, Dwight was working overtime to make sure every detail was in place: telling people when to start eyebrows and eyelashes, giving orders on lighting, and everything in between. The day of the show, Sheree leisurely strolled in as preparations were underway; she was more concerned with getting a hairpiece than making sure hem lines were in place.

The line finally made its way down the runway. Lisa, who arrived on time and in a fashion-show appropriate (though, questionable) outfit, did not seem too impressed with the collection. Sheree was too busy posing for pictures to care.  Is it just me, or has she gone to the school of Tyra Banks? Looks like Sheree has taken one too many “Smiling With Your Eyes” courses.

Moving on …

Continue reading »

Has 'The Real Housewives of Atlanta' star NeNe Leakes become a villain?

NUP_133080_0790 Remember NeNe during the first season of "The Real Housewives of Atlanta"? She was the homegirl you wanted to hang out with the most -- unpretentious (unlike the other wives), silly and unapologetic. She had money just like the rest of them, but she was on the outskirts of the group because she didn't put on airs. And when on-again, off-again friend Sheree didn't invite her to the big party, those were real feelings being hurt.

But then the show blew up and became a big fat hit for Bravo. "Atlanta" is the highest-rated of the network's "Housewives" series, surpassing viewership for the ladies of Orange County, New York and New Jersey. NeNe blew up too. Her feud with Kim -- similar to the Lauren Conrad-Heidi Montag "she said, she said" war on "The Hills" -- made the pair stars, and in Season 2, NeNe couldn't stop basking in her newfound spotlight.

She understood how she became famous, and so, very blatantly, she took every opportunity to stir up trouble in the show's second season. She arranged a get-together just days after Sheree had yanked off Kim's wig on the street. She acted the diva during the alter-ego photo shoot. She got up in newcomer Kandi's face repeatedly, and for no good reason. (Picking on Kandi? The most grounded and sympathetic of the "Housewives"? Not smart.) And just watch what happens during tonight's season finale.

I had lunch with all of the "Atlanta" women -- minus Kim -- not too long ago in Westwood, and it was pretty clear that being in close confines wasn't how they prefer to be. "We're cordial," Lisa kept saying. "Cordial" being separate and apart from "friends." After one too many questions about Kim, NeNe went off: "I'm not gonna sit here and eat my lunch and talk about Kim. You want to ask me about something about myself, I'd be glad to talk to you about it. I have a book. I'm doing a lot of things. I'm not interviewing about Kim."

Well, not until she felt like it. 

Continue reading »

'Real Housewives of Atlanta': Wigging out

Kim_housewives The sad news of the death of Kandi’s fiancé (or ex-fiance, it appears) continues to haunt the show as footage of A.J. is still used.

This episode saw A.J. and Kandi’s mother, Joyce, as they struggled to reach common ground.  In this episode, they attended counseling to work their differences out. But the attempt was futile. So, naturally, a party where the two were forced to be cordial was on the horizon.  

That long-overdue engagement party Sheree and Kim had planned for Kandi and A.J. finally arrived. To mark the occasion, Kim changed her wig.  And, in the process, we learned  a few more reasons why Kim’s brain should be donated to science: 1) she changes her hairpiece every day.  2) Her wigs are $430 each.  At 30 pieces a month, she’s spending almost $13,000 a month on wigs. If true -- which I highly doubt; Big Poppa or not -- the world of medicine would benefit greatly from researching someone crazy enough to spend that much money on shiny hairpieces.

But back to the engagement party (attended by everyone but Nene, who was left off the guest list. Maybe that’s why it was boring…) Joyce struggled to give her blessings to the couple.  And Kim’s “Tardy for the Party” song managed to creep its way into another episode -- only by reference. Thank God! Who else is slightly nauseated at the thought of Kim considering releasing a full album?

Oh, and Sheree is still gearing up for her fashion show debut -- big surprise. She got her first shipment of samples, and from the looks of things Marc Jacobs can sleep easy at night.  Now, I’m all for Sheree getting fashion advice from people who don’t consider jeans and hoodies proper formal attire … but, um, is Dwight really the style connoisseur she should be listening to? Those suits he wears are hardly fashion-forward; the oversized ties look like they came straight out of Bozo the Clown’s closet.  Tim Gunn, we need you on Bravo now more than ever!

So Show Trackers, what did you think of the episode? From the looks of Sheree’s samples, are her designs something you would wear? Are they more impressive than Lisa’s "Closet Freak" line? Share your thoughts.  Time is winding down for our Atlanta housewives.  There’s just one episode left.  The good news: A drama-infused two-part reunion special is just around the corner! (Oct. 29 and Nov. 5). Is anyone else excited for the return of the Orange County ladies?

--Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: Kim Zolciak; Credit: Bravo

Related stories:

The new faces on the ‘Real Housewives of New York City’

Bravo picks up 'The Real Housewives of D.C.,' orders second helping of 'New Jersey'

Complete 'The Real Housewives of Atlanta' coverage on Showtracker 


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