In the few years that the Disney-backed group Cheetah Girls were operating (2002-2008 overall), they were very very successful. There were three films, albums, a tour, a clothing line, perfume collections, books and a whole lot more. But behind the scenes, group members Raven-Symoné, Kiely Williams, Adrienne Bailon (now Houghton) and Sabrina Bryan had some issues. They were part of Raven’s early departure from the films, and in case you weren’t aware, they have continued to the present-day. This came to light with recent questions about the possibility of a Cheetah Girls reunion.
There were rumors that Kiely outed Raven’s sexuality when they were working in the group and that the two got into an actual fight, which the former 3LW star denied. And she has been open about her disappointment in Adrienne Bailon, claiming The Real co-host was not a real friend to her. As for Raven, she recently made it clear that she wasn’t too fond of Kiely having her name in her mouth all over again.
Not to mention, in a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight, Raven gave the impression that she would only be comfortable working with Adrienne because of tension.
“I need to talk to the girls first because we need to curate an answer. This can go so sideways on so many levels,” she said. “Listen, I’m down with Adrienne, whatever Adrienne’s down to do, I’m down. I will work with Adrienne for the rest of my life. She’s awesome sauce. I love everybody in their own ways. It’s just…listen, real girl groups have their moments, imagine a fake one.”
But Raven, who is pretty zen these days and starring in Disney’s Raven’s Home, wanted to hash things out with Kiely at least, who was open to clearing the air as well. They hopped on Instagram Live late this week to do so. It was quite interesting, with the convo starting by the two confronting some hard truths.
“I guess you say I’m messy, but I don’t try to be,” Kiely said. “I think it comes out.”
“Girl, you messy,” Raven replied.
“I don’t try to be, I promise.”
“You know what? It’s okay. I don’t have a problem with it,” Raven said. “I’ve put myself in places with people that are all kinds of different ways and you have to appreciate them for what it is. I get to talk to you and heal a wound from that time period when we were younger that I probably wouldn’t get to do if I didn’t understand that you know what, you like to shake sh-t up.”
“Yeah, I’m a firestarter for sure,” Kiely responded. “It’s an acquired taste.”
“And I didn’t understand that when I was younger.”
Raven also confirmed that Kiely didn’t expose her sexuality when they were working together, which Kiely was appreciative of, considering the many labels people have put on her over the last few years due to her drama with her former group members.
“No you didn’t rat me out when I was younger,” she said.
“When I saw that I was upset because I was like, alright now, f–k,” Kiely said. “I’m a colorist, I’m a racist, I’m a bully, and now I’m a homophobe? No.”
Raven also stated that she didn’t do the third Cheetah Girls movie because she wasn’t a fan of the “clique-ish way” things were on set. She said it “made me feel excluded from my original team set, not that it was strong to begin with, but I felt excluded.” She said she felt “ostracized,” and that there were also some personal things going on that she was dealing with that made her leave the popular project behind.
There was also a moment in the conversation when Raven admitted that Kiely rubbed her the wrong way at one point during their days working together after telling her that she auditioned for The Cosby Show, which Raven was a star of as Olivia from 1989 to 1992.
“Let me tell you what you did that made me mad,” she said. “Back in the day, you came up to me like, ‘I auditioned for The Cosby Show too…”
“I did and I didn’t get it because I’m not a good actress. That’s the truth!” Kiely replied. “I did not get the part. I didn’t okay? It’s alright.”
Overall, over a span of 15 minutes or so, the former groupmates came to common ground and worked through their problems.
“I’m a lot so I get it, especially if I felt like my back was against the wall,” Kiely said. “But I would never try to hurt you on purpose.”
“I appreciate that sweetheart, and I release any pain towards you that I had,” Raven replied. “I cancel, clear and delete it.”
As for if she could forgive and work with Adrienne again though, Kiely wasn’t as open because she said the star never reached out to her following a family tragedy when they were supposed to be good friends.
“Why do I have to talk to Adrienne? No. She didn’t come to my dad’s funeral or call me when he died,” she said. “You can say what you want about me and how you felt about me, but you can’t say I never f–kin’ rode for Adrienne. You can’t say that. So no, man.”
Raven encouraged her though, telling her that because of the history they have, they should at least be able to talk.
“You didn’t do anything and that’s a horrible thing if she did not show up to your dad’s funeral, but stuff happens and people’s anger — my best friend didn’t invite me to her wedding and she met her husband through me!” she said. “But I still talk to her because the history we have with one another is so thick. [Adrienne] knows a part of you that nobody else knows. Y’all prideful a–es need to calm down, take a pill for a second and say, I’m pissed at you, but let’s talk about it. Just like I said with you, I’m pissed about it, but let’s get it out like grown women.”
In the end, it was a healthy, fruitful conversation, with no one pretending they were about to be best friends now that the air had been cleared.
“I’m glad we talked, and honestly, I’m glad it wasn’t like some fake ass, we’re friends now,” Kiely said.
“Nah, I still don’t know you like that,” Raven replied. “But I’m cool with you [laughs].”
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