One of the downsides of having your own website, is that it takes a lot of work and consumes all of your time. It keeps me from reading other blogs that I used to really enjoy, like StraightFromtheA. Michelle is a great source of RHOA tea because she is very active in the ATL social life and runs in the same circles as a few of the housewives. Phaedra in particular. Because of her friendliness with Phaedra, Atlien has been fairly mum on the unfortunate position that Phaedra is currently facing. She did however post recently about a party to celebrate Cynthia’s spread in Ebony Magazine, that she attended. She is also the source for the numerous reports you guys a have sent me (thanks!) about Phaedra “taking a leave of absence” from filming RHOA. If you had told me that the story was coming from Atlien I would have investigated sooner. I’ve drilled down all the tea. Grab a snack and get ready for this because there is a lot to cover. And for me the Phaedra stuff is a mere side order.
I am continuing to research and am not sure where to start. First of all, the party was held on July 17th at Bar One to celebrate Cynthia Bailey’s Ebony Magazine spread. All of the former housewives were there except three. According to Atlien, Phaedra was en route when she was tipped off that Apollo was there. She opted not to show up. It is interesting that production would not alert Phaedra to the fact that her soon to be ex husband would be at the event.
As you recall, I exclusively reported that the previous day, July 16th, Apollo, Phaedra and the boys were filming in Chastain Park. They arrived in separate cars, even the boys and the nanny had their own car. It sounded like a supervised visitation sort of thing to me. I speculated that it would be the Phaedra and Apollo breakup scene. Perhaps she presented the divorce papers. There have been reports of Phaedra filing for divorce this week. I found nothing on the website to substantiate that claim. However, it is obvious that will be happening. My spies in Phaedra’s neighborhood say they haven’t seen Apollo at the house in quite some time. She’s done with him. This is not news.
According to Atlien, this setup of Phaedra by production to get another scene with the two of them together, caused her to “take a leave of absence” from filming. My guess that” leave of absence” will come to mean only filming at home with the boys until Apollo is off to the big house. I get the feeling she does not want to wander onto another RHOA set only to be greeted by Apollo. Can she do that after signing a contract? Bravo could hold her to the contract, or she could solve the issue by taking out a restraining order I suppose. I imagine that Bravo will acquiesce to her wishes since he should be gone in a few months. I am guessing given the nature of the marriage, Apollo might actually be able to negotiate a paycheck for his last few scenes. I’m hoping if he did, it will go straight to the restitution fund.
Another housewife not in attendance was Nene Leakes. My initial reaction was YASSSSS! Even more proof that Nene is a part timer this season! So I went to check out where Nene Leakes was on July, 17th. And that was easy, she was in the Bravo clubhouse. Plus, she still HATES Cynthia. So… what better excuse to get out of attending what was likely an all in Bravo function that a trip to the clubhouse. It does make me feel better about my source saying she is “limited capacity” because erryone else was there. So to me this is bigger news confirming my source. It was also interesting to me that Atlien did not explain either of the other two absences…
Like Porsha’s glaring absence, that once again reinforces my source. Porsha likes Cynthia and the other girls who were there, Kandi, and Todd, (technically not a girl) and Kenya. Porsha has seemingly gone full-time on Dish Nation. She is still on there and was supposed to be a June fill-in for someone, but has been very successful on that show. It seems to be a great match for her. She didn’t tweet much if any on July 17th. She has also been doing a lot of meet and greet club events. Looking more and more like a FOH if anything.
Which brings us to Kenya. Atlien hates Kenya, which is understandable because she is friends with Phaedra and to a smaller degree Nene. According to Atlien, Kenya was there and filmed a scene with Apollo where he came clean to Kenya about why he claimed she was texting with him inappropriately. Apparently, Phaedra saw him texting Kenya and he blamed the whole thing, which was never a thing, on Kenya and her interest in him. Again, this is not a new revelation. I thought that was sorted out in Mexico, but apparently after Apollo’s behavior on the reunion necessitated a new scene. Another person at the filming claims that Kenya and Apollo were both there but at different times. That makes sense to me, because Kenya had to catch a plane to her Vegas event the next day. Also because I don’t think Kenya has any more desire to film with Apollo than Phaedra does. That said, I believeAtlien and don’t think she would make up a fakescene being shot. So Kenya was there with Apollo that the other party didn’t notice is my best interpretation of conflicting accounts. You can read the post from STFA here.
UPDATE: I finally caught up with my best source while furiously trying to confirm things. Here is what I found out. Nene is refusing to film with Cynthia. So even if she wasn’t on WWHL that night, she would not have gone to Bar One. For now, production seems to be tolerating her bullshit. Kenya is refusing to tape with Porsha, because… well because Porsha assaulted her. Now I am wondering if this whole “limited contract” talk has more to do with who these two will film with and less about whether or not they will hold a peach. This leaves Nene and Porsha filming together and apart from the other housewives. This will go on for a while. Probably until Porsha’s criminal case goes to court. My current understanding is that Porsha’s ‘limited capacity” (giggle) contract is not at all the same as Nene’s.
Neither contracts are Friend Of contracts. That is the bad news, because, they may or may not both be holding a peach in the opening but both have lessor roles. Porsha’s contract is something I have never, ever heard of Bravo doing before. She’s basically being “retested” like they do with new housewives. She is being paid, but her contract has a short potential end date. It’s hard to understand, mostly because it is hard to remember to listen to Source and not think, “OMG, what other questions do I have?” at the same time. Basically, her contract is to shoot for x number of weeks, with a possible renewal for more weeks or be cut. Which sounds promising!
Except…Nene needs a new ally, and Porsha is doing a lot of filming with Nene. So Porsha may be kept on so Nene has someone to film. Nene’s “limited contract” is apparently one that allows her more freedom to do other things on camera than simply film with the rest of the cast. Like her Zumanity stuff, and her HSN stuff. It sounds like she will still be paid for all of the episodes meaning she is making good money, and will likely hold a peach if they have enough stuff to put her on every episode in some capacity. Even if she is just filming with Gregg talking about all of her “opportunities.” I am not sure if this letting Nene decide who she will and won’t film with attitude is going to last all season with production or not. Clearly, they have their hands full of divatude this season.
I asked if Phaedra ditched filming, and about the leave of absence thing. Source said that Phaedra arrived at Bar One but did not come in because Apollo was there. She told production she wasn’t feeling well or something and left. There is no “leave of absence” this is not corporate America, and she had filmed again since the Bar One shoot.
Kenya did film a scene with Apollo where he apologized to her for making up lies about her, specifically the made up LA stalking drama. I doubt Kenya was too excited by this current apology kick. Sometimes sorry is not enough. If someone had been lying to the world about me for two seasons, saying I’m sorry I lied doesn’t make up for making my life a living hell. Now, Phaedra apologizing for believing her husband might mend some fences. I don’t see that ever happening either, unless it somehow benefits Phaedra.
Next, I had a couple of paragraphs about two people I thought were potential replacements. I ran them by Source and Source flatly denied they were being tested. So that was hours of research that was for nothing. Basically, they are testing a few people, but nothing has been decided yet and they remain open to testing other options. They would like two brand new faces, they ideally want another wife with young kids but have not really found anyone that fits those perimeters. The only name I could pry out of Source was Demetria McKinney. Demetria is a single singer/actress who is on the Tyler Perry production Meet the Browns. She has done other acting work, mostly for Tyler Perry. I didn’t get the impression that this casting was a sure thing, just someone they are considering among a few others. According to Wikipedia, Demetria is 30 and she is really to young to fit in. They are trying to push out Portia for a reason, mainly immaturity and lack of self-control.
So that is everything that I was able to confirm regarding this situation. There were a few other tidbits I might include in some upcoming post. Sorry this took so long. I was waiting for confirmation, and have had a lot going on in my personal life (what little one I have) today. I am going to go find some wine. I’m not sure I am up for RHONJ tonight. But, I’ll give it the old college try I suppose.