You can always tell when a season of Real Housewives of Atlanta is ending because Nene Leakes starts screaming that she is leaving the show for bigger and better things. In no season did this predictable behavior start sooner than in season four. For the first part of the shooting season Nene refused to film with most of the other housewives causing Bravo to invent reasons to throw Nene, Kandi and Cynthia together.
Then, back in early December when TamaraTattles was the first to break the news that Nene was filming Glee
(and lots of people didn’t believe me!), Nene’s squawking reached a fever pitch. About that same time Courtney Cloer Thompson’s
name started being thrown around as a possible replacement for Nene. Suddenly, Nene was taking every hair show and small town club event she could get all the while tweeting like a desperate woman whose ship was sinking.
So what is Nene’s fate for season five?
Despite rumors from the Watch What Happens Live
set that Nene was making outrageous demands for accommodations and perks for her appearances, Nene has been one of the most frequent guests on WWHL with Andy Cohen. In fact, she is due for yet another appearance on the show tomorrow night. Once Nene was on Glee, it seems the Bravo crew was a little more tolerant of her antics. Andy Cohen has been seen on twitter sending words of encouragement Nene’s way on more than one occasion. And so it seems that thin ice that Nene was once galloping across in blissful ignorance has thickened up enough to hold her through another season.
But nothing gets between Nene and success quite like Nene herself. When Nene makes the rounds these days in the media, she talks first about her other ventures like Glee, The Game, and Let’s Stay Together. When she does talk about RHOA it is usually to insult her castmates and point out that she is the star of the show. Recently, when RHOA ran a filler episode about Kim and Kroy because of the Oscars, Nene repeatedly tweeted that there was no episode at all and that her followers should report back to RHOA the following week. She made some tweet meant to be cryptic about “finally being free!” a short while back that lead to some Internet speculation she had been released from her contract.
Nene might want to ask Jill Zarin what happens when a housewife gets too big for her Skweez Couture.
Nene is currently paid 10K per episode to appear on RHOA. There are 18 regular episodes plus two (perhaps three?) reunion shows. That brings her salary for season four to 200K. Nene is being paid SAG scale for Glee
making $7,260 per episode. Although her role has a recurring story arc, she will be lucky to work five episodes of Glee, making less than 40K. Next year is projected to be the last season of Glee
if it is picked up again. If Nene is asked back she could expect five or so more episodes. Her work on The Game
and Let’s Stay Together
paid $4,538 an episode. It is doubtful either of those shows will require her services in the future. So Nene has the possibility of another 40K from Glee but no firm contract. What Nene needs to understand is that her stereotypical angry black woman persona is the reason she was cast on these other shows in the first place. In each show she is cast in, she is essentially playing herself. Brian White attempted to school Nene on the this concept
during a recent interview and it didn’t go over well. But facts are facts and Nene gets paid for buffoonery. If she is not keeping her ignorant behavior in the public eye on RHOA, Bravo’s most popular show, she will quickly lose relevance with casting agents.
When it comes to RHOA season five, if it airs without Nene Leakes it will be because she can’t stand that the other women don’t like her and she is willing to cut off her nosejob to spite her face to get away from them. I can’t really discount that possibility. We all remember Nene bragging about her “Trump Checks” when she got a $16,000 stipend for appearing on Celebrity Apprentice. While most celebrities donate that check to their charity, Nene quit the show and ran off with the check like she stole something and bought a dozen pair of shoes with it. This sort of financial delusion does not bode well for Nene’s future. She does seem to have a crackerjack PR team at the moment and if her manager has enough control over her, he should be able to talk some sense into Nene and we will see her and her hello kitty again next season. What she should be doing is making peace with at least some of the cast and asking Bravo for a raise. She is, like her or not, the star of the show and deserves to make more than Sheree. Speaking of Sheree, I’ve saved her for last for a reason.