Real Housewives of Atlanta Star, NeNe Leakes, taped a special Watch What Happens Live Interview with Andy Cohen that aired Sunday night, and it was quite the trip down memory lane! Andy showed never before seen footage of NeNe’s audition tape, and footage of NeNe with Kim Zolciak, and Sheree Whitfield, filming the pilot for the RHOA, which was once titled Ladies of Atlanta.
Andy asked NeNe how she has changed now compared to Season 1, and she said, “I’ve changed a lot. I’ve been through so many life experiences. I feel like I’m the kind of person that learns from every experience. And I feel like if you can’t learn from every experience you can’t grow.”
“We were so young and so ridiculous,” NeNe said of footage Andy played of she and Kim from Season 1. “Look at how I was looking, and [laughs] look at how Kim was looking, and we really thought we were the sh*t!”
Looking back at footage of she and Kim when they were inseparable, NeNe describes it to be a “weird” and “sad” feeling. “I feel like we used to have such a good time together. We’d get together and laugh like hell. We were just so ridiculous.”
So the burning question, are NeNe and Kim friends again? “It’s not like we’re friends,” NeNe explains. “Kim and I are both in two good places in our lives, and I feel like we sort of agreed to just let the past be the past, and move on with the future. I wish her all the best. It’s not like we’re going to hang out and be best buds. It’s a lot of work we have to do to be that way again.”
But what about NeNe’s recent tweet that she and Kim had a long emotional talk? NeNe reveals Kim sent her another text message after the Reunion taping because NeNe had recently done an article with In Touch Magazine where she was talking about her upcoming wedding. Kim contacted NeNe to let her know that In Touch contacted Kim for a comment, because NeNe said she would invite Kim to her wedding. Kim sent NeNe everything she told In Touch in a text and told NeNe she’d like to be friends again. NeNe and Kim joked and NeNe told Gregg that she really wants to trust Kim again, but it’s hard for her to trust Kim after everything they’ve been through.
So what really happened where Kim alleges NeNe choked her in a parking lot? “Something happened,” NeNe laughed. “But um everybody came out fine. Wig in tact.”
When it comes to Kandi Burruss suing Kim over the song Don’t Be Tardy For The Party, NeNe seems to side with Kim! “It’s kind of weird Kandi is going after her now,” NeNe said. “I felt like why didn’t she do it a long time ago? And I felt like at the Reunion show Kandi wanted me or us to say something to Kim, and I wasn’t going to say anything. Because all of the years I had a falling outs with Kim nobody backed me up. So I wasn’t going to sit there and back her up.”
And surprisingly, NeNe didn’t want Kim to leave RHOA. “We started this journey together and I didn’t want her to leave,” NeNe admits. “I felt like if she left it’s just not the same. Like we need wig to be here!”
As for NeNe’s other former cast mate and former friend, Sheree Whitfield, Nene explains, “Sheree out of all of the girls is the one person I will never have anything else to do with. I think Sheree is very evil, I think she’s very mean and she is a true bitch,” NeNe said. “Sheree an I had an argument before the cameras actually started rolling. It was our first Housewives meeting with the production company and we were in a restaurant, and Sheree and I got into our first argument.”
“About what?” Andy asks. “I felt like Sheree wasn’t being a good friend,” NeNe continued. “She would always want information from you, like you would tell her stuff, but she would never really tell you anything. I hated that about her. She was super secretive.”
NeNe also spoke with Andy about The Housewives “Divorce Curse,” and weighed in on if she thinks the show is to blame for couples getting divorced after joining the cast of The Real Housewives. NeNe said she does NOT believe the show is to blame for martial problems between couples. “When Gregg and I entered the show, the problems we had were just magnified,” NeNe said of her own divorce. “But we had problems entering the show.” NeNe also added the Porsha and Kordell Stewart also had problems entering the show, and she’s sure all of the other ladies that have divorced already had existing marital problems that cannot be blamed on the cameras.
“A lot of these men were independent men that supported their families, and we were their Housewives,” NeNe explains. “And then all of the sudden we are in the spotlight and that’s hard for a lot of men to take.”
A lot of viewers have accused NeNe of dialing her personality back in recent Seasons of RHOA. Especially since she’s “made it” in Hollywood. And NeNe claims she doesn’t hold back on purpose. She says she has just “grown up.”
NeNe on the other Real Housewives:
Phaedra Parks: “I like the Phaedra that is ‘reading’ and talking her trash. I like the fun Phaedra.”
Kenya Moore & Water Jackson: “I believe there was never a relationship, never. I believe Kenya and Walter had a pact coming on the show and it didn’t work out in the end. And they were never in a relationship.”
RHONJ: “I just love them. They are such gangsters. They are so entertaining to me, but you know what they are getting a little too nasty!”
Teresa Giudice vs. Melissa Gorga: “It switched. I was on Teresa’s side then I went to Melissa’s side, then I just didn’t like either one of them at that point. I was like ‘wait a minute, it’s just gone too far,’” NeNe says. “I feel for Teresa. There’s something about being the first one in. When you’re the first one in on one of these shows and then somebody comes behind you, it’s like ‘hold on, you need to respect the veteran, I was here first! And you came over here and started trying to play on my terrirtory, honey.’ So I kinda side with Teresa in that area. ‘Listen Melissa, you came on her show, so you watched her on television, and you wanted to be on the show like she was. So no girl, take a seat now, you are not a veteran.’”
Other Real Housewives Veterans: “I feel like Vicki is the boss. Ramona is the boss. I’m the boss. You came on my show because you were watching me at home, and you wanted to be just like me. That’s why you joined the show.” What do all of the original Housewives have in common that has made them last? “Work ethic,” NeNe says. “And that’s very different than the new girls coming on the show. All of us work our ass off. All of us definitely have big personalities.”
Other Casts: “It’s weird because I can look and see who’s divided, because I’m in it,” NeNe admits. Andy asks NeNe what her impressions of RHOBH are. “Weird,” NeNe says. “Brandi is just a train wreck, she’s off the chain, she’s just off the hook. Just all of the things she has to say and she’s so talkative.” Andy reveals NeNe had a run in with Brandi at the Upfronts party. “She thinks she’s a gangsta,” NeNe says of Brandi. “She thinks she can get in people’s faces and say whatever she wants. I like her when she’s not drinking.” Next Andy asks about RHOC. “For me, I don’t connect with most of the Orange County girls, “ NeNe admits. “I almost want you to re cast Orange County. Couple of them could go. Couple of them are quite boring.”
Regrets: “I regret a lot of things. I regret my marriage being out there publicly. I regret some of my fights with Kim. I had to have them, but I hate that they had to happen on camera. I hate that I ever told you guys [Bravo] about Sheree.”
In conclusion, NeNe says to Andy, “I want to tell you that being on this show has been so amazing and has opened up so many doors and opportunities for me, and I couldn’t be more blessed. And I thank you guys for loving me. When and if I ever leave the show I will always be in the background. I feel like I’m the madam.”
Photo Credit: Bravo