Despite rumors that Sheree Whitfield might not be coming back, Kandi Burruss said last night at the opening of her new unisex boutique Tags that Bravo is negotiating with all of five of them for a third season.
She wasn’t aware if anybody has signed a contract yet, so there are no guarantees all five will be back. It will come down to whether Bravo is willing to pay enough money. NeNe Leakes had said at South DeKalb Mall earlier this year that they were each paid $100,000 for season two. Expect a big raise given that “Real Housewives” averaged about 2.8 million viewers, by far the biggest so far for any “Housewives” franchise.
Burruss said it’s possible that Bravo will add a sixth housewife. Indeed, the network is fishing around for someone to fill that slot though she said she may not know herself until the network starts taping in February.
That’s the same month she hopes to have her album out. She’s been thrilled by the reception to her music so far and has no regrets doing “Real Housewives,” given the exposure it’s given her and despite the whole A.J. Jewell issue. (He died a few weeks ago after getting into a fight at the Body Tap strip club. Family members disputed an autopsy report earlier this week in which the coroner blamed exertion related to sickle cell anemia as the cause of his death. In fact, the family held a vigil last night at the club while Burruss was at her party.)
She said she was aware A.J. had the sickle cell trait but had no idea it could cause death. Otherwise, she said she wasn’t in the mood to talk about the autopsy results. She said she’s kept busy to help cope with the loss of her former fiance.
On the bright side, her budget boutique has done very well in its first month, Burruss said, especially the women’s clothing, which has turned over four times in four weeks.
The party was hopping when I got there at 9 p.m., packed wall to wall inside the boutique, which is right off Atlanta Road outside I-285 in Smyrna.
Two of the other “Housewives” showed up. Kim Zolciak, who told the Bert show this morning that she too had heard all five cast members were asked back but had not spoken to Sheree about it, was there with Big Poppa. (I think I saw him but I’m not 100% sure. Kandi said he had been there.) Lisa Wu Hartwell and her husband Ed were there as well.
I took a couple of photos of Kim but we didn’t cross paths. Lisa came up to me and wondered why everyone on the blogs hate them so much. I said haters (or, if that term disturbs you, people who love to point out the foibles of characters on TV) just like to vent. The ratings speak for themselves. She too said she had heard the rumors about Sheree but knew nothing about her leaving.
Dwight Eubanks, looking dapper as always, said he was thrilled by our coverage of his house recently in the paper and online.
Here’s the video interview I did with Kandi. My wife was the videographer:
Check out the boutique at 4500 West Village Place, Suite 2003, Smyrna, GA.