How The “Real Housewives” Franchise Is Being Affected By The Pandemic

The coronavirus has affected film and television productions, and brought talk shows like Bravo’s Watch What Happens Live to an absolute standstill (with host Andy Cohen also contracting COVID-19). Many fans have been wondering how this would be affecting their favorite Housewives franchises, as it was already reported that the much anticipated The Real Housewives of Atlanta reunion is delayed indefinitely. Currently the Atlanta franchise is the only one airing. Season 12 The Real Housewives of New York debuts Thursday, April 2, followed by  Season 10 of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills debuting on Wednesday, April 15. Yesterday from his home, a self-quarantined Cohen dialed into Amy Phillips Reality Checked show on his eponymous Radio Andy Sirius/XM station and dropped some serious tea about as Phillips herself called it, the “State of the Housewives”. 

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“I’m getting so much release New York now, release Beverly Hills now!” Cohen told  Phillips on Monday. “The issue is there’s only a certain amount of episodes totally color-corrected and locked right now, for both of those shows; I think for New York there’s like, eight or nine done, and for Beverly Hills, there’s like, five done. Something like that”. Cohen did say that the coronavirus has slowed down final edits of the shows, as post-production now will be done individually at home rather than in the production office. “If we released all those now, we would wind up screwing ourselves in the end, so that’s the issue. The truth of the matter is, if this is going to go on for a while, just think of how much more we’re going to be ready for New York in ten days when it premieres! I just think we need to be focused” Cohen emphatically said. 

Cohen reiterated that we will not be be seeing an Atlanta reunion in the near future, with the season finale fast approaching. (The finale, typically lasting two or three episodes, has been delayed due to travel restrictions). He also reiterated again that there are no plans to hold a virtual reunion. Cohen also teased that a trailer for The Real Housewives of Potomac will be dropping soon.

As for shows currently in production, an insider told TheWrap that The Real Housewives of Orange County — the original Housewives show — has paused production with no exact timetable on when it will start up again. The source says it is also early to tell how productions on Housewives spin-off Vanderpump Rules (typically ramping up in June) and The Real Housewives of Dallas will be affected. The brand new franchise The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City is allegedly close to wrapping production, so how that franchise will be affected is unknown.

As for The Real Housewives of New Jersey, cast member Jackie Goldschneider told Danny Pellegrino on his Everything Iconic podcast that “we started filming the new season and we only got one week in before we shut down,” she said on the March 19 episode. “If we would have never got going I think it would have been different, but we all like, prepared, and then we started and then we were filming and then … it just stopped. So I think all of us are kind of feeling very unsettled right now”. When asked about details on filming, Goldschneider said “In the first week of filming, I only filmed with one other person so I can’t say firsthand”.

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