The Real Housewives Of Atlanta Returns Oct. 4th
The Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills Premieres Oct. 14th
The Real Housewives Of Orange County Returns Jan.'11

Monday, July 26, 2010

Should Reality Stars Get Paid More?

Article from the NY Times.

Snooki had kissed The Situation, Ronnie had hugged Sammi goodbye and the cameras had stopped rolling. Last summer, “Jersey Shore” wasn’t yet a runaway hit; it was just another reality show in the works for MTV. Nonetheless, the show’s executive producer, SallyAnn Salsano, sat the young cast members down and gave them each a gift — and a warning.

“Don’t lose sight of who you are,” she said, reminding them that she and MTV had been there at the outset.

Fame soon found them, and so did the desire for fortune. This summer, the stars of “Jersey Shore” held out for more money before resuming production in Seaside Heights last week. Together, they shared about $25,000 as a cast for the entire first season; now they will reportedly earn at least that much for each episode. The series will resume Thursday night on MTV, part of Viacom.

Reality television became a force because viewers liked it and because, without celebrities or big salaries, it was cheap. The shows can cost as little as $200,000 for a half-hour episode, compared with the $1 million or more typical for hourlong scripted shows.

But now the genre is creating its own stars on shows like “Jersey Shore,” “The City” on MTV and the “Real Housewives” franchise on Bravo. With stars come demands for higher salaries, threatening the inexpensive economic model of reality TV. Are the shows falling victim to their own success?

Network executives say no, but they concede they are constantly on guard against that possibility. They strive to make shows grow proportionally: as the salaries grow, the ratings and the rates paid by advertisers must grow in lockstep. When the proportions break down, cancellation can loom.

“There can be a time when a show prices itself out of profitability,” said Chris Linn, executive vice president for MTV production. The reality show “The Hills,” which ended last month after six seasons, seems like a case study of those proportions breaking down; its stars, plucked from obscurity, were collecting six-figure paychecks near the end, yet the show’s ratings were sinking. Mr. Linn, however, said no show had been canceled because it had “priced itself out” in his six years at MTV.

“When a show’s production costs are reaching that point, we’ll look for a way to reinvent that show or look for other efficiencies,” he said in a telephone interview. Last year, one of the stars of “The Hills,” Whitney Port, was given her own show, “The City,” which MTV is weighing whether to renew.

It might seem that the starlets and the housewives of the “Hills” hold all the cards; their personalities are the reasons that millions of viewers tune in.

“In scripted, as a producer, you have the ability to write a character out. But in reality, your talent often is the show, so they have a greater ability to use nonperformance as a lever to extract a better deal,” said Michael Hirschorn, a former VH1 executive who now runs a production company, Ish Entertainment.

When shows like “Jersey Shore” begin, they are essentially just experiments, and the average Joe cast members are paid accordingly. One cable executive privately characterized the initial salaries as “bubkes.”

After the season one finale of “Jersey Shore” was watched by a startlingly high 4.8 million viewers in the dead of winter, MTV immediately promised $10,000 an episode to the cast.

They retreated to South Beach last spring to tape the second season, but when it came time to film the second half of the season back in Seaside Heights, where the series was originally set, newly appointed agents for the cast members insisted on another set of raises.

The deal-making played out in the celebrity press, with some stars reportedly saying that they could make more money by hosting parties at clubs than by showing up for the TV tapings. MTV now calls the current Seaside Heights taping Season Three.

Some cast members apparently have grand ambitions. The Situation, a. k. a. Mike Sorrentino, was quoted in The Daily Beast Web site last week as saying that he had his eye on Hollywood, mentioning “Dancing With the Stars,” meetings with movie studios and “people calling for sitcoms.”

MTV declined to comment on contractual details, and the network said the cast members were not available for interviews.

Ms. Salsano clearly feels that the cast members need the exposure the TV show provides.

“The benefit is not the money they make from being on the show,” she said. “The benefit is they’ve all got so many amazing opportunities because of the show. They come here for a month; the show’s on for four months; and when the show’s airing, that’s when they’re having their heyday, if you will.”

Bravo encourages the stars of its “Housewives” shows to talk up their side projects in interviews. “We try to do well by them, and they know that they can do well with us,” said Andy Cohen, a senior vice president at Bravo, a unit of NBC Universal.

For Mr. Cohen, the crucial word is “ensemble.” He and other executives assert that almost any reality cast member is expendable, even if the person has been on a show for multiple seasons. Some housewives have departed because of financial disputes with Bravo — “I think it’s happened a couple times,” Mr. Cohen said — and the producers have successfully replaced them.

“And we’re always casting in every city,” Mr. Cohen added.

That said, Bravo just started its first “Housewives” spin-off that features just one woman, Bethenny Frankel, getting married and having a baby. Doesn’t a show centered on one person pose more of a risk? “We’re very careful with that,” Mr. Cohen said, declining to elaborate.

After the first season of a reality show, networks tend to set salaries on a sliding scale, and some offer bonuses based on ratings. Add security and transportation costs, and production budgets can soar.

At the peak of “Jon & Kate Plus 8,” TLC was paying the supersize family $22,500 an episode, according to Jon Gosselin, who was sued by the network, which accused him of breaching his contract. The show fizzled last year when the lead characters split up.

That would seem like a cautionary tale to reality stars everywhere. Ms. Salsano said “Jersey Shore” members should not forget what a gift the show is. It will keep going, she said, “as long as the kids stay true to who they are.”

Kelly-RHONY Talks To OUT Magazine

Q&A Kelly did with OUT magazine.
By Joseph Hassan
The third installment of Bravo’s The Real Housewives of New York City was so chock-full of drama and in-fighting that the show’s producers deemed the reunion special at season’s end warranted three individual episodes. To the viewer, socialite Kelly Killoren Bensimon had a particularly rough go of it this time around, especially in light of allegations by other cast members -- and many viewers -- that she had suffered a complete mental collapse during a televised trip to St. Barts. Out took the chance to catch up with the outspoken mother of two about her upcoming return to the workforce, what she did for Gay Pride this year and why sex education is such a hot-button issue for her. We also learned that Kelly has a very different take on this season of Housewives, seeing each fight and every insult as little more than an opportunity to raise her brand and spread her message.
Out: How is your summer going?
Kelly Killoren Bensimon: So far it’s been great. I’ve gotten to spend a lot time with my girls. It’s been so exciting because obviously during the school year they are busy and we have lot more time to just be a family. And my jewelry line just launched, which is great.

And you were just recently at The Mohegan Sun Casino – what was that about?
I was at Mohegan Sun for the opening of their Mohegan Sun Days event, it’s their [monthly] GL -- GLBT night. I always think that sounds like BLT. It was just a really, really fun group of people. Everyone was just having good clean fun… dancing like crazy. I was dancing with everybody and it was just a lot of fun to be in an environment like that where everyone was having a blast and no one was like trying to be too cool for school.

And you rode on the Gay Men’s Health Crisis float in New York City Pride this year?
I did. Yeah it was an incredible honor. I mean to be invited by GMHC to be on their float for the gay pride is up there in terms of one of the biggest honors for me. I have an initiative, which is safe sex. I have a twelve-year-old daughter and, you know, basically she has been learning all about sex in school and so -- not that I am encouraging her to have sex -- but I am encouraging her when she does have sex to think and to be smart about the choices that she is going to make. So then speaking with GMHC about safe sex and also just about bullying, I learned so much about how alternative lifestyles get bullied so much and I was really disturbed by that to be honest with you because I have been a model for a long time and I have had so much respect for people that have alternative lifestyles. I mean it’s just the they want to live and I don’t have any problem with that. I think that’s great. I want people to celebrate themselves.

Well, it’s a fact of life. It’s interesting you bring up sex education in school because yesterday The White House launched a new plan for combating HIV in the U.S. – on both the prevention and treatment side. One of the things that has frustrated many people is the previous administration’s focus on abstinence-only sex education. What are your thoughts there?
I think education is key and I think that giving children the tool to make the right decision is the best thing to do. I mean, whether they are going to be abstinent or whether they are going to be engaging in sexual activity, that’s really none of my business. But what is my business is encouraging them to think and to be smart about the choices that they are making. If they want to engage in sexual activity, be smart about it -- you don’t want to be a number. If I can encourage my daughter to think and be smart about her choices then I have done my job.

So it’s about making sure that young men and women are at least armed with all the information to make the right decision themselves?
Yeah, I mean I have seen so many people pass from this disease [AIDS] that it makes sense for someone like me to speak about it because it has affected me in so many different ways.

Do you see your involvement with GMHC growing in the future -- more work with activism?
I would like to be more active, but more importantly it’s the whole idea of safe sex. Whether it’s same-sex relations or heterosexual relationships, it’s the same issue. If you are not making the right choices, it doesn’t really matter… whether it’s HIV or contracting another disease. So my role in this is to use the voice that I have and to encourage people to think about the choices that they are making. I am not going to be lobbying about it but I have a big mouth [laughs] and when it comes to my kids, I would do anything to protect them.

I want to talk about something a lot of people don’t know about -- your upbringing. You grew up in Illinois?
I am from Rockford, Illinois, and I went to a small private school of twenty people. My twin brother, me, and eighteen other students. I started modeling when I was sixteen and I lived with Stephanie Seymour in New York City for a week and we had a lot of fun. And I went to Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut, for a year and I transferred to Columbia and then when I was young -- I mean I was very, very young -- I met [fashion photographer] Gil [Bensimon] at twenty three and by twenty seven I was married.

And these days you’ve got your hands in a lot of things – the jewelry line, the writing. Can you talk about what’s coming up?
We just finished the third season of The Real Housewives Of New York City and my jewelry line just launched. I am in the process of working on a really, really new project that is confidential and I can’t tell you about, but its going to be very, very exciting. It’s coming out in a couple of weeks and it’s a really big deal for me. I am going back to my roots and going back to being an editor, which is exciting. And that’s the biggest news for the fall. Kelly goes back to work. And I am really excited about exposing myself to the world and what I love, which is art, entertainment, architecture, people that are doing interesting things.

So it’s on the media side. You’re going to be getting back into more of that?
Yeah. That’s where I belong, that’s what I am good at. I am not good at fighting. I’m not a good fighter.

Does that mean that you are not going to be doing the next season of Housewives?
I am not sure. I can't give you that answer. That’s up to Bravo. They ask us back, we don’t demand anything of them.

Speaking of Housewives, this season was obviously bit of a rough one --
Not really.

No, you don’t think so?
I mean maybe for the viewer but not for me. [Laughs]

What's your take -- that this was just a “normal” season for you?
It’s my job to create content and they asked me to be on the show because they wanted me to legitimize the brand and they wanted a real socialite. They wanted a real New Yorker, if you will, on the show. And it was a great opportunity for me because it’s obviously got everything that I love, whether it’s my safe sex initiative or anti-bullying or working on my jewelry line or just having my books be -- literally, I mean, you can't even get any of my books anymore -- they are not available. So… it’s been just unbelievable for that and to put my name on the map. Whether or not you watch the show, everybody knows my name so that’s a huge honor and I am really grateful to Bravo for exposing me and exploiting my name like that.

It’s created that platform --
Yeah. I don’t really see it as anything else. It’s really entertaining television -- it’s really nothing more than that. But it’s my job I get paid to entertain that’s my job on television. Like when I am working for a magazine I get paid to write, I get paid to edit. When I am on television, I get paid to entertain that’s my job. It’s really no more and no less.

You say you get paid to entertain. So are those reactions absolutely real or is there some hyperbole to live up to those expectations?
No, my reactions are incredibly authentic, but it’s like being in a bad improv class. I’m responding to something that I wouldn’t necessarily respond to but because I am getting paid I have to respond to it. Is it a normal occurrence to me? I would never engage in fighting. It’s really not my game and I don’t find it interesting and I don’t find it evocative. I mean I find incredibly creative people evocative. I find architects evocative. I find amazing artists evocative. Do I find fighting with someone I don’t know evocative? Not really. Does it make great TV? Absolutely.

What comes across in this show is that you’re one of the women who doesn’t participate as much in the self-editing process. What you see is what you get –
I would never edit. That’s what everyone says to me, that’s the biggest complaint. They are like why aren't you using it as a vehicle, why aren't you showing a certain side so you can maximize on it. And I’m like – what for? If you are going to say something mean to me, I would rather cry and scream at you and say I am not going to put up with that then be disingenuous and create an emotion or emote an emotion that’s not real. I don’t take my job home. Like I tell my kids, we’re not affected by it. The rest of the world might be, but we are not.

Gotcha. So you are sort of less concerned about the way that things come across on TV --
If I was concerned, on the reunion show, I would have been engaged in the conversation. I mean I was so bored by everything I was just like, “The conversation is over.” We already had this so I am not going to talk about talking. I think that was clear to everybody they were like uh oh...

You had moved on, they were still talking but you weren’t having any more of it --
No. It’s not that I had moved on, it’s just if you want to talk to me about something that’s real and something that’s serious, then absolutely I’ll talk about it. But if you are going to talk to me about something that you fabricated -- absolutely not.

Are you interested in having your own show?
It’s funny that you ask that because my kids were saying that the other day. They are like, "We want to have your own show. People need to see who Kelly Bensimon really is." The one reason I would like to do my own show is because I am exposed to so many unbelievable people and so I would use my show as a vehicle to explore all these different people that I know, whether it would be Richard Meier to the man that helps me with my computers. I really want people to understand that brilliance isn't about a financial amount, it’s about the state of mind and I happen to know an incredibly amazing group of people. I would like to be the vehicle to expose all those amazing people. I mean that’s my one reason why I love working for magazines. Everybody has a great story -- I would love to be the vehicle for that. Would it be necessarily about Kelly Killoren Bensimon? It’s never really about me. It’s always about the other people because that’s what I find interesting. I don’t really find what I do really interesting.

So it sounds like more of talk show format --
No, not a talk show format. I’d rather have them come in and help me train my dog. The dog trainer that I have is amazing with animals and I’d rather have you learn about him and then me going and meeting a man that’s opening a new restaurant or someone that’s working in branding or someone that’s in fashion. I would rather have you come in and walk in my shoes and see all these amazing people. Do I need to be a comic relief for them? No. Can I be a vehicle for them to show how amazing people are? Yeah, I would love that. But not really like a talk show. I would rather have it be more organic.

So you’d be the vehicle to learn about other people?
Yeah because I am very low key and people -- when they are around me they talk to me because I am actually interested in what they have to say. And I am not combative and I just want to know who they are and what makes them them. I think that a lot of people respond well to that and you don’t see that on Housewives because they don’t want me to be the real me. They want me to be a socialite in New York. The way that they like me is not the way that I really am. The moment where I was filming for Hamptons Magazine -- when I was taking the pictures -- that was really a great moment because it really showed how I am like that. They did show me in my real life during that scene and also with my kids they showed me in real life.

Right, but that’s obviously not most of the air time that you get --
Well, most of the air time is with these women that I don’t even know and it’s like “I don’t even understand what you’re fighting with me about.” I don’t get it. Mostly I’m just like “Huh? What?” And then I look like I’m an airhead because I’m not engaging in stuff that I don’t understand. I don’t want to -- it's not like we are talking about politics, we are not talking about something that’s going to affect my kids or my business so therefore I don’t want to talk about.

So you’re just sort of disengaged and disinterested in what's going on around you on the show?
It’s not interesting, it's not like people are talking about their real feelings… It’s always about random facts that are disconnected and I am always just like, “Guys… we need a script.” Because we need to stick to something like "Today we are going to talk about kids, tomorrow we are going to talk about dogs, tomorrow and the next day we are going to talk about work" -- so there is a common conversation so we all know what we are talking about versus "I don’t like your hair."

Well, what would an ideal story or plot line? You mentioned politics earlier. What is interesting to you in the realm of politics right now that would make for a more interesting dialogue?
Talking about sex. All of us have kids. What are you doing? How are you teaching your kids about safe sex? Is your daughter having sex? I mean don’t you think America, don’t you think all the women in America that are in their forties would want to hear how New York women are dealing with their kids thinking about sex -- starting to learn about sex and the possibility of engaging in it? Don’t you think people want to hear about that? Or going to back to work at forty years old -- how do you go back to the workplace after you did not work for so long? Or charity work. How do you actually start a charity? Basically, more information is what I’m saying. It’s like teaching people how to do stuff.

Teaching as opposed to just fighting?
It’s not like these women aren’t smart. They all are exposed to such amazing people and I don’t understand why we are not exploring how great we are -- we would rather exploit how bad we are.

Do you think the ratings would be as good?
You can still fight, but you could learn, too. It’s called back-door education. Why do we have to be all flowers and lollipops. Why can't it be like fighting but we are actually learning. That’s called back-door education. I would love that.

Maybe that’s what your show could be about?
Because I want my show to be about back-door education! [Laughs]. You know this new program that I am doing? I said there’s only one thing that I want. I only want one thing. I want live stream. So every time I walk into the office, I want to be live. They’re like, "What are you talking about?" I said every time I walk into to the office I wanted to be live -- on me in every single meeting. How do I work, how do I do things, how do I get things done? Because people are always asking me, "How do you do so much in a day? How do you get all the stuff done?"

To be clear, you’re talking about people being able to tune in and watch you at any point of the day to see what you are actually doing at work?
Yep, at any point of the day.

And that’s what you’re going to be doing? That’s going to happen?
Yep. It’s going to happen.

That’s really interesting --
While everyone else is so worried about what they are going to look like, I want people to see me. I want people to see me making really bad mistakes and how I come up with a solution to fix it.

Has that ever been done before?
No -- people don’t do that, people don’t want people to see how they work.

Well it gets back to the self-editing concept -- just putting yourself out there completely for everyone to see.
Why not?

Are you excited about that or does it make you nervous?
I am really excited about it. I am nervous because what if I look like crap or something, but I mean apart from that [laughs]… I guess the vanity part, but that’s it. I would love for people to see watch me make mistakes -- I would love it.

From a logistical perspective, how does that work? Are there stationary cameras in your office, just capturing everything all the time or are you still followed by a camera crew?
No, no. For the live stream basically you can actually do it on your iPhone. There is actually a live stream application that you can actually live stream what you do all the time. It’s brilliant. Brilliant. So you can actually edit yourself if you want to. I don’t really want to. When I am in the office I want people to see how I work.

It sounds like people are going to get an opportunity to make their own call about who you are as a person as opposed to what has been edited down for TV. Do you agree with that?
That’s not really the reason I am doing it. I am not really doing it because I want people to judge me. I am doing it because I want to expose people to this amazing opportunity that I have.

Right. What I’m saying is that I think people might be surprised by the fact that the Kelly that they see now with all of this live footage is not necessarily the Kelly that they made initial judgments about from Housewives --
Oh, yeah. But, listen, let’s not badmouth what I got from The Real Housewives. If I didn't take the chance to go on Real Housewives, I would never in a million years be able to sell an earring for Feeding America because no one would really care. I would never be able to go on live stream because no one would really care. And so from every single dramatic movement that happened, I will never regret any moment. I will never regret any fight, any tear, anything that I ever said because it was most the amazing opportunity and it’s given me the voice I could never in a millions years get.

So you see Housewives as a stepping-stone for what is next to come?
Yeah. And I am grateful for it. It’s going to a good year. You know, everybody knows the problems -- why can't we come up with different solutions? And that’s like what I like. I like teaching in a different way and if it doesn’t work we can always do something. What's the big deal.

It sounds like obviously there are a lot of new elements to this new position. Is it for a publication or is it something that is totally new?
I can't tell you that [laughs]. But… it’s going to be different. It’s totally innovative and it’s something that I am so proud of because finally I’m able to do what I love and that’s my motto: do what you love. I’m running a half marathon in three weeks for the Red Cross and that’s really exciting, too. So it’s like all these different opportunities have come from fighting.

Right, right --
Fighting is going to be an incredible vehicle for me [laughs]

Not one you were necessarily expecting, but it seems to have worked out OK.
Because I realize what it is. I’m not taking it personally. If my best friend ever spoke to me in a way that one of the women spoke to me on television I would be speechless. I wouldn’t know how to repair a situation like that. But we’re on-camera friends and you just brush it off because it doesn’t really matter. They don’t care and so you can't care.

And you probably realized through each little stab and each insult that it’s actually helping you in the long run?
Right, right. I just feel that out of everything there is something positive. Every single situation has always got something positive. That’s how I think.

Who is Danielle's Ex?

Article from

Real Housewives of New Jersey‘s Danielle Staub certainly lived many lives, including one marriage to a very wealthy man: Thomas N. Staub.

There haven’t been a lot of pictures or information about Thomas since his ex-wife blew up as one of the stars of the hit Bravo show, but he will make an appearance on tonight’s episode at his oldest daughter Christine‘s birthday party.

Staub, CFO of his family successful family business (Pacemaker treadmill manufacturers Aerobics, Inc.), met Danielle when she was still stripping. In her book The Naked Truth, she depicts him as a business man with sandy hair and blue eyes who spent lots of money and time trying to get her attention. At first she wanted to keep things “just business,” but eventually broke down, married him, quit stripping (begrudgingly), and settled down to a life of opulence and child-rearing. In fact, having babies was something Tom was reportedly eager to do, she quotes him twice as saying “I can’t wait to get you pregnant.”
In her book, Danielle vaguely accuses him of cheating in between the births of their daughters Christine and Jillian, but says she ultimately ended the 12-year married because of “emotional distance.”

“From the outside it seemed as if we had everything. But on the inside, our relationship was hollow. It was no longer a marriage of love, and I wasn’t about to live a lie or stay in a marriage because a man was taking care of me and making things easy. Should I stay in a marriage because all of my bills were paid? . . . No, because that’s what a prostitute does.”
Interesting distinction. But, as stated above, Danielle has lived many, many lives.

On the show Danielle has often complained that her ex-husband wasn’t paying the many bills for her huge palatial home on time, or giving them money to eat on. Danielle is now making money through the Real Housewives franchise, her book, her song, and maybe other income streams and now lives in a condo with her girls. She is romantically linked to lesbian singer Lori Michaels.

54-year-old Tom has reportedly remarried and is expecting a son. His company, Aerobics, Inc., filed for bankruptcy this May.

Michaele Salahi-RHODC Ready To Move Forward

Story from the Associated Press.
Michaele Salahi is ready to move on. She's sure the president is, too, because he's joked about her and her husband's infamous gatecrashing episode. And so she thinks the judicial system should be ready to move on, as well.

"To be honest, I don't know where it's at," she told The Associated Press Monday of the criminal investigation by a federal grand jury, which still could lead to prison time for the party-going, polo-loving couple from Virginia wine country. "But our attorneys have said to go on with our lives."

"And if the president and vice president are joking about it," she added, "I think they're ready to move forward, too."
Certainly the Salahis are taking their attorneys' advice.

Far from staying quietly out of the spotlight, they are happily promoting the Aug. 5 debut of Bravo's "Real Housewives of D.C.," in which, judging from the first episode, Michaele takes center stage — along with the incident that got her into trouble. (A teaser for a later episode shows Salahi in a limo in her famous red sari, speaking excitedly into a cell phone, apparently about the state dinner she is about to, well, crash.)

"I can't wait!" Salahi said in a telephone interview Monday. "This is full circle for me. I think the world will see that we're not just about that one night. We're not just two people who went to a dinner."

In fact, all these months later, Salahi professes still not to understand why so much attention was paid to that one incident last November. "It must have been a slow news week," she said.

And she promised plenty of other drama to come, where the Salahis are concerned.

Wow, more than an incident that led to embarrassing revelations about holes in presidential security? To a congressional hearing? The rolling of heads at the Secret Service? The departure of the White House social secretary?

Well, yes. "We share our family pain," Salahi said, "our trials and tribulations." (Tareq Salahi has been enmeshed in a family feud over his Virginia winery.) "Maybe we can help other people."

But Salahi shies away from saying she's the star of the new series — while thanking her interviewer for saying something so "loving" — allowing that she hasn't even seen the first episode, a copy of which was provided last month to the AP.

"Maybe I'm highlighted because that event got world attention, but the important thing for me is highlighting D.C.," she said. "That part was so much fun for me. People are going to see the great diversity of our nation's capital, how D.C. really works. And you're going to hear the women discussing politics!"

Well, not exactly on a high level. The new "housewives," like Salahi, are hardly movers and shakers in politics, but rather the owner of a modeling agency, a real estate broker, a suburban mother of five, and a British interior designer new to Washington. A typical political argument in the first episode is about whether it was rude of President Obama not to respond to the interior designer's wedding invitation. Or whether black and white women should go to the same hair salons.

Another potential point of conflict: Housewife Lynda Erkiletian calls the willowy Salahi, 44, anorexic at one point — something that causes Salahi to break out, momentarily, from the "we-all-love-each-other" theme.

"Sometimes people are just naturally skinny," she said defensively in the interview. "You might hate me for that, Lynda." She adds: "I might have other things going on. I don't know what kid of high you get for saying that about someone." So there.

Ask Salahi about the couple's finances, and the picture is murky. Bravo is paying her for the show, but generally, the "housewives" don't make a fortune unless their fame leads to other opportunities. The couple is also collaborating on a book with investigative reporter Diane Dimond, but it's not clear if they will share in the proceeds.

"My husband knows all the financial stuff," Salahi said breezily. "Me, I'm just a party Barbie girl! I like to have fun, and do some good on the way. As long as I have enough for Starbucks, a few Hershey's kisses during the day, and a cute outfit — maybe hair and makeup — I'm good to go!"

In any case, she said, "It's really not about the money. It's really about the platform the show gives us. It's such an honor to be added to such an incredible franchise."

Given all that has happened — what she calls the "bad attention," the hounding after the state dinner, and now the "happy attention" she's getting with the show — would Salahi have done everything the same? Would she have gotten in that limo to the White House with her intensely coifed blonde hair and her red sari, Bravo's production company in tow?

"People have asked me that," she said. "And yes, I would. Because in my heart I know I went in, gave my ID, and if at any time they told us we weren't wanted, we'd have left. The last eight months were awful. But I learned a lot. Who matters, what matters. Yes, I would do it again."

Teresa-RHONJ Asked For $3,000.00 To Appear At A Charity

Post from Page Six,The NY Post.

Reps for broke "Real Housewife" Teresa Giudice are said to have demanded $3,000 for her to appear at a charity event for abused women. A manager for Giudice, who recently filed for bankruptcy, said she would only appear at the July 19 New Jersey fund-raiser for Strengthen Our Sisters if she was paid.

Organizer Athena Georgiadis told us, "Mike Esterman, who books her appearances, said . . . she would not show up unless she got paid. I explained this was for a shelter for women and children. He said it doesn't matter...Danielle Staub, her daughters, and Lori Michaels came for free." Jacquelyn Aluotto, a filmmaker who helped plan the event, added, "At first I felt angry, but now I feel sorry for people like Teresa." Esterman said, "I made it clear I only handle her paid appearances, and the fee is $3,000 and a car service. I said charity events have to be agreed by Teresa personally, and they should reach out to her directly."

Paul Wharton-RHODC Looks At Both Sides

Post from the Washington Examiner.

By: Nikki Schwab
He's not officially a housewife (and doesn't even think "housewives" accurately describes the five local women on the reality television show), but celebrity stylist Paul Wharton gets enough face time in the first episode of the "Real Housewives of D.C." to be considered part of the cast.

"You can look forward to seeing my many moods and hairstyles throughout the season," he told Yeas & Nays, adding that he filmed with the cast several days a week for five months.

In the pilot, which debuts Aug. 5, he is seen hanging out with both Michaele Salahi and Lynda Erkiletian and delivers a message to Salahi that Erkiletian, who owns a modeling agency, thinks she's gotten too thin.

Throughout the season, he tries not to take sides, he tells Yeas & Nays.

"If I had an issue with someone, I dealt with it the same way I would in real life -- with the support of my full hair and makeup team, good lighting and a couple of cocktails," Wharton said.

And while cast members Mary Amons and Stacie Turner downplayed the White House crash, Wharton has a different take on the infamous incident.

"If the gate crash turns out not to be a big deal on the show, someone in the edit [room] is getting canned for sure," he said.

RHONY Attend "Paradiso" At Watermill Center

Post from NY Social Diary.

Pictures of Luann with Jacques and Ramona at the Watermill Center, which staged “Paradiso,” for the 17th Annual Watermill Summer Benefit, the function raised close to $1.4 million for the Center’s year-round artist residency and education programs.


Teresa Thinks Danielle Could Take Lessons From Jacqueline

Post from Babble.

By: Lulu and Moxleys Mom
I don’t know about you, but if my family was in the midst of an embarrassing bankruptcy scandal due to fiscal irresponsible and pure greed, I wouldn’t point fingers at what constitutes good mothering. But, hey, I’m not Teresa Giudice and a star of the Real Housewives of New Jersey, capiche? Giudice has some harsh words via her Bravo blog for nemesis Danielle Staub: “The rest of us are having parties, taking our kids to classes, cooking them dinner, picking pumpkins … all you ever see her doing is worrying about us. Please, move on! Get a life! Pay some attention to your gorgeous daughters!”

Giudice also calls Staub “a big liar” and lists the reasons why Jacqueline Laurita, the mother of attack dog and hair extension-pulling Ashley Holmes, is superior to Staub in the parenting department:
“Danielle had so much to say about how Jacqueline is raising Ashley. Look at yourself Danielle! Jacqueline constantly tells Ashley how behave, how to rise above, what’s right and wrong. You don’t see Jacqueline practicing punching things and saying it’s Danielle in front of her kids. None of us do that. To quote Danielle: ‘How horrible for those kids!’ A year ago, they were playing with mine and Jacqueline’s kids. They spent the weekend with us at our beach house. And now they have to watch their mom all paranoid and crazy practicing attacking people they were friends with?”

Sigh. Yes, Jacqueline has raised quite a gem.

And Giudice wants to — again — set the record straight about her foreclosure situation or lack thereof: “my house still isn’t and never has been under foreclosure, thank you, thank you very much.” No, Teresa, THANK YOU very much for being a drain on the good tax payers of New Jersey and bill-paying citizens everywhere!

As for what Teresa thinks of Kim G.: “I do wish Kim G. wasn’t grabbing me so I didn’t have to push her off because I really do respect the elderly…She’s extremely two-faced, and so desperate to be on TV. She and her ‘busted up Sex and the Cityfriends at Danielle’s court date said it all. I would call them the Golden Girls, but I don’t want to ‘name call’ and that’s an insult to the Golden Girls. I love Betty White. Kim G., not so much.”

I, for one, am happy to see Teresa is above name-calling. Make it stop! Please, Andy Cohen, make it stop! Read Teresa’s entire blog entry here. Or go light yourself on fire — it might be more pleasant.

Yoga Is Bethenny's Salvation

Article from Celebrity Health & Fitness.

Bethenny Frankel is shedding some more light on her regimen to stay slim. Yoga, she says, is an important part of daily routine. She says she’s been doing it for 20 years and credits it for helping to maintain her shape.

“Yoga is my salvation,” Frankel blogged, July 23. “I used to spend hours on the treadmill or spinning class, which made me manic, and I ate much more than usual because of the intense workout.”

Bethenny, who lost a stunning 29 pounds just 21 days after delivering daughter Bryn Hoppy via C-section in May, says the most important thing about a workout routine is doing something you enjoy and will stick with.

“Yoga is pretty much all I do,” she says. “I walk or surf or rollerblade when I can, and I will do the elliptical machine from time to time. However, yoga is the basis of my fitness routine. Not all exercise needs to leave you gasping for air and burning thousands of calories.”

Frankel, who says she used to be 15-20 pounds heavier in her twenties than she is now at 39, confessed she has battled food addiction and exercise bulimia in the past.

“I used to be obsessed with spinning, doing it five times a week,” Bethenny recalls. “I was 15 pounds heavier and working out like a madwoman. I would spin, then be starving, eat like crazy, then vow to spin like a lunatic again the next day.

“It gave me no peace. Many people gain weight when they are working out like this because the increase in calories consumed exceed those burned.”

Frankel, who bounced back into bikini-shape just 3 weeks after having a baby, says yoga isn’t for everyone, and stresses that the key is finding a routine that works for you.

“Do exercise for the sole purpose of feeling better,” she says. “Don’t make it something about counting calories or counting minutes on a treadmill. Find something that you can manage and that makes you feel better.

“What works for one may not work for another.”

Bethenny, who starred on The Real Housewives of New York City for three seasons, now stars in her own spinoff, Bethenny’s Getting Married.

In addition releasing her own fitness DVD and writing two diet books, Frankel just finished a self-help book called A Place of Yes, and is working on her fourth book, Naturally Fit Pregnancy.

Luann's What Would The Countess Do? Column

Post from OK magazine.

What Would the Countess Do?: Declining Invitations; Public Revenge
Author: LuAnn de Lesseps
When it comes to etiquette, manners and overall good behavior, even celebrities need help navigating the rough waters of stardom! It’s a good thing Countess LuAnn de Lesseps of the Real Housewives of New York is joining forces with OK! to school them on the right thing to do! In a rough situation, we just ask, “What Would the Countess Do?” This week she tackles declining invitations and taking revenge on an ex in public.
Where there’s a wedding, there are a series of parties before the actual wedding; and the same follows for babies, all events that. How do you either politely decline an invite to yet another occasion — or how do you get away with not sending a present for each event, without coming off as stingy?
I have a lot of friends and receive more invitations than I can accept. If I cannot attend an event, I respond as soon as possible so that my host can invite someone else in my place. For close friends, I send a gift regardless of my attendance. For acquaintances, if I attend the event, I give a gift but if I don’t attend, I send my congratulations with my RSVP.

Tip: When declining an invitation, never complain or explain. Simply say, “I have other plans for that evening.” Always RSVP!


Paris Hilton had a DJ announce that her ex-boyfriend Doug Reinhardt should leave the St. Tropez dance club, Les Caves du Roy. He left with his head down shortly thereafter. Is it okay to publicly embarrass your ex just because he’s in the same club?
Paris Hilton should be embarrassed by her behavior at Les Caves du Roy when she had the DJ ask her ex-boyfriend to leave simply because she was uncomfortable with his presence. I was just at this club and I can assure you that it is plenty big enough for two exes to coexist without creating a scene. She was selfish and inconsiderate to her ex-boyfriend and she made herself look bad, not him. Potential suitors should be aware of the risk of humiliation that comes with having dated Paris Hilton.

Tip: Be gracious to ex-lovers. Like I sing in my song, money can’t buy you class!

Photo:Wire Image

Luann-RHONY Proud Of Victoria

Pic/Tweet from Luann.

I'm so proud of Victoria, working so hard at her first job! Doesn't she look adorable in her little cap and apron?

Bethenny Visits Red Door Spa

Post from GlamBlush.

Posted by India-Jewel
We hear authoress/reality TV star Bethenny Frankel recently received a very decadent gift from Real Housewives of NY co-star/frenemy Jill Zarin.

Last week, the new mom dropped by Red Door Spa in New York City and got back into the swing of things with her beauty routine; Zarin gifted Frankel a set of super sweet spa services which included a warm cream manicure & pedicure, a microdermabrasion treatment, an eyebrow arching session, and an eye contour treatment. How’s that for post-pregnancy pampering?

Ramona's Vacation Pictures

Click HERE to go to Ramona's facebook and see her vacation pics.

Kandi On The Pole At TAGS

Pic./Tweet from Kandi.

here's another pic from the pole dance class I had at my store TAGS. Go to shop online.

Dina with the OC girls

Pic./Tweet from Dina.

Should I move to the OC cast? I have the right hair color..

RHODC Premier Party Hosted By Michaele Salahi

Post from DC's Most

DC’s MOST FABULOUS Magazine presents Real Housewives of DC LIVE Premier Party, Benefiting DAB the AIDS Bear Project.Date:

Date: August 5, 2010
Time: 7:00 – 11:00PM
Location: EFN Lounge,1318 9th Street, NW
Washington, DC

10 PM – 2 AM
1008 Vermont Ave, NW
Come join DC’s MOST FABULOUS Magazine, star of Real Housewives of DC/Commander in Chic – MICHAELE SALAHI and invited cast members of the Real Housewives of DC, OC, Atlanta, New York and New Jersey as we welcome the newest member of the Real Housewives franchise while celebrating a great cause.

************** NO TICKET SALES AT DOOR ********************

$25.00 GENERAL ADMISSION – Includes Admission to Real Housewives of DC LIVE Premier Party, cash bar, and complementary admission to The Official After Party BEFORE 12 Midnight.

$80.00 VIP – Includes VIP Admission to the Real Housewives of DC LIVE Premier Party VIP Level, complementary wine, champagne, beer, passed hor d’overs and complementary VIP admission to the Official After Party VIP Area all night.

$150 Housewives Circle – Includes VIP Admission to the Real Housewives of DC LIVE Premier Party Exclusive VIP ROOM, complementary PREMIUM OPEN BAR, passed hor d’overs and complementary VIP admission to the Official After Party VIP Area all night.

$500 Table Service On General Admission Level – Includes GENERAL ADMISSION for up to 8 guest, complementary bottles of Absolute Vodka and champagne, complementary admission to The Official After Party before 12 Midnight.

Jill-RHONY Attends Shawn Marion’s Poker Tournament

Pic. of Jill and Amber Rose when Jill attended the Swagg Mobile Application Lounge.

Source:I Look Fly
Photo Credit: WENN and  Seth Browarnik/

Bethenny Guest Co-Hosts on Mike Huckabee's New Fox Show

"The Huckabee Show" will air at 11 a.m. weekdays on WTVT, Channel 13. Huckabee  is getting a tryout on seven Fox owned stations.

Huckabee's show is taped in New York in front of a studio audience. Huckabee's first episode featured Bethenny as the Governor's first guest co-host.
They talked a lot about her diet and baby, Bryn. Huckabee and Frankel also interviewed a Pensacola woman who is looking for a husband on Facebook and did a segment on how women can defend themselves from sexual attackers.

Huckabee interviewed actor Robert Duvall,79, about his next film, "Get Low," which is based on a Tennessee hermit who gave his own "funeral party" in 1938 while still alive.

Game show legend Bob Barker and talk show host Wendy Williams are guests on today's show.


Ashley-RHONJ Nose Job

Post and Pics from Reality Tea.

It seems Ashley Holmes, 19-year-old star of the Real Housewives of New Jersey, is joining the ranks of Bravo reality stars who have had some form of plastic surgery, as Ashley got a nose job just weeks ago.

After posting some new pictures of Ashley this weekend during which we pointed out she looked a tad different, some of our awesome readers pointed out in the comments section that Ashley did indeed get some plastic surgery.

A look at Ashley’s facebook page shows a picture of the bandaged up reality star after getting her nose job (that picture is posted below). When asked by her fans, and yes she has fans (26, 650 fans to be exact), why she got a nose job, Ashley gave the following hollywood answer, saying her rhinoplasty was done for her “septum and sinus problems.”

“it was actually for my septum and sinus problems.. while they were in there they smoothed a tiny bump i actually still kind of have it haha,” was actually Ashley’s full reply on June 10.

One has to wonder if her nose was the only thing she had done as she looks much different from before, and as much as we hate to say it or even think it, she does look much prettier no? Not that there was anything wrong with the way she looked before, but here’s to hoping Ashley stops here and doesn’t get any more changes done to her face or body.

Below are more photos of Ashley plus a photo of her with dad Matt Holmes, who also happens to be Jacqueline Laurita’s ex-husband.

Jill/Kelly At Art For Life

Pics. of Jill and Kelly when they attended the Art For Life Event to raise money for The Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation. The event was held in East Hampton and hosted by Russell Simmons.

Jill and Russell Simmons