Exclusive: NeNe Leakes Talks New HSN Clothing Line, Cynthia & Marlo, Wendy Williams & Why She Keeps Coming Back To RHOA
What made you come back to RHOA, when you felt like you were made into the villain?
Every single season, somehow people think I’m not coming back. Somehow, I’m the only one who people ask ‘Is she coming back or not?’ It’s like why do you guys consistently ask if I’m coming back, what about the rest of the girls? But I think that people don’t understand it’s not really our choice like that. When I signed on for season 1, I signed on for a number of seasons. We’re like actors, we sign for a number of seasons and they’re either going to pick you up at the end of the season or drop you, unless you finish out your contract. You finish out your contract, then you’re out. You become a free agent like Lebron James. So I have obligations. It’s not like I can just walk away from something like it’s just that easy, it’s really not.
And I have to say, listen, although the show can be very negative, it truly, for me–now I know it ain’t happening for everybody because I looked and I’ve got two big ole eyes– but for me it has opened many doors of opportunity. It has been a major platform for me. It is a negative show from time to time. And it does suck from time to time but it’s also an amazing platform and it definitely opened up doors of opportunity for me.
Everybody on these shows are not smart. Everybody isn’t smart. Trust me. A lot of girls are on the show and they walk around and they’re not that smart. They’re not…that…smart. They’re not business savvy, how about that?
What can you say you’ve learned from the ending of your friendships with Marlo and Cynthia?
I think the people who watch these shows, they don’t see everything, one. Two, Marlo, first of all, has never been a housewife, she’s never signed on. She doesn’t have a contract. We’re all contracted. She’s just a character that just comes around to play. When we do a show like this, there will be new girls that come on these shows all the time. I will give you a good example: when Kenya came on the show I never met Kenya Moore a day in my life, until she came to Atlanta and they signed her to be a housewife. They obviously have to connect her with somebody. And then when the shows air, you guys watch the show and think ‘she fell out with her friend.’ It’s like girl, I’ve only known her for six months and she talked about me, she’s not my friend!
Same thing for Cynthia. Not saying that Cynthia and I did not have a friendship. We actually formed a real friendship in real life. They signed Cynthia up to do this show, I never met her a day in my life. I know people said she modeled, I’m just keeping it real, I’d never seen her model, I never knew her name, I never knew anything about her. They brought her to my front door step and said ‘This is who you’re shooting with today’. It was the first time I met her a day in my life. Outside of that we did form a real friendship. But people who watched “I Dream Of NeNe,” know I have real friends in my real NeNe Leakes life, who I have been friends with for 15-20 years.
Some of my newer fiends or my tv friendships, they showed up as bridesmaids because we are doing television and so they were there for tv.
As far as Marlo, she’s a non-factor, really. She really, really is.
Cynthia I honestly had a real friendship with her. I don’t know where all this is coming from. But it was sorted out on season 7 for all of your guys to see. But I must say I feel like I’m a great friend to everybody who’s really been a friend in my life.