The Real Housewives of Atlanta are currently filming Season 9 and the casting rumors are circulating. Nene Leakes made an appearance on Live! With Kelly June 14 and verified that she would be on board although she wouldn’t elaborate in what capacity. Cynthia Bailey, Phaedra Parks, Kandi Buress, Sheree Whitfield, and Kenya Moore have all signed new contracts, but the fate of Porsha Williams is still in limbo, and according to BuddyTV, RHOA alum Kim Zolciak-Biermann may make a return.
Nene Leakes is the only cast member who has appeared in every season, and while she only made cameos in Season 8, her presence affected the ratings enough to encourage the producers to approach her for more time on Season 9. Leakes is the highest-paid cast member of any of the Real Housewives franchises, reportedly getting $2 million per season as a full-time participant. She has successfully branched out to perform on Broadway and on other television shows, including her current gig as one of the celebrity panelists on the new To Tell The Truth game show.
During her interview with Live! With Kelly, she mentioned that she had a hand in who was originally cast for Season 1, and as an original cast member that apparently has a lot of influence, she probably has a say in who will be cast for this Season 9 as well. There is some speculation that she is actively campaigning to get her frenemy Zolciak-Biermann back on the show and kick Porsha Williams off the show, which Leakes has denied.
Zolciak-Biermann did little to dispel that rumor, and with a husband, six kids, a wig line, and Season 5 of Don’t Be Tardy, a spin-off of the Real Housewives of Atlanta series, to contend with, there shouldn’t be enough time in the day for RHOA drama.
— Kim ZolciakBiermann (@Kimzolciak) March 7, 2016
After Porsha Williams was blindsided at the last Real Housewives of Atlanta reunion show with footage of her attacking her friend Jami Ziegler (over a man no less), showrunners have been on the fence about whether to continue her contract. The rumor is that Bravo is nervous about Porsha’s violent tendencies because she has also attacked two of her castmates, Kenya Moore and Cynthia Bailey.
While catfights are great for ratings, if her anger management issues are severe enough for the producers and her castmates to consider her a liability, we may not be seeing Porsha and her luxurious weaves on the show, according to MNR Daily. She may not be worried about dealing with a mob mentality because she has a side gig as a co-host on Dish Nation, and will be a contestant on Season 8 of Celebrity Apprentice. Porsha is a fan favorite, so perhaps she will be offered a limited contract; it won’t guarantee her an appearance in every episode, but it will limit the amount of time the girls have to get on her nerves and cause her to snap.
NeNe Leakes, Sheree Whitfield, and Kim Zolciak-Biermann (who was on the show for the first five seasons) are original cast members, and knowing that Zolciak-Biermann can run with the best of them and has no filter, her appearance on the show isn’t going to make the atmosphere any less volatile.
What do the other members think of Porsha Williams and Kim Zolciak-Biermann as cast members? Several of the Real Housewives of Atlanta women have voiced their concerns over Williams and none have been louder than Kenya, who has openly stated that if Williams returns, she will leave, but she is all for Zolciak-Biermann’s return.
“I live for Kim. Every now and then we’ll text each other and she’s always funny and just crazy. She just has her own energy. I just really like her.”
Will a NeNe Leakes and Kim Zolciak television reunion improve the Real Housewives of Atlanta show, and does Porsha Williams need a time out? Sound off in the comment section.
[Image via Bravo]