Kandi Burruss Backs Away From Bethenny Frankel’s Call For Strike

Kandi Burruss is taking a different stance from Bethenny Frankel‘s call for a strike among reality television stars. 

Burruss discussed the comments made by her former “Real Housewives” co-star regarding the potential unionization and strike of reality stars during a recent interview. Frankel’s proposal aims to secure improved contracts and show solidarity with the ongoing Writers Guild of America (WGA) and Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) strikes.

Kandi Burruss Needs No Help Fighting Her Own Battles

Just two weeks ago, Frankel took to Instagram to advocate what she terms the “reality TV reckoning,” citing the importance of reality stars uniting to push for increased contractual influence, better compensation and heightened oversight over their portrayal in the show’s final edits.

Now, Burruss, who is currently focused on promoting her cover feature for PhotoBook magazine, has explained why she cannot join the “Real Housewives of New York City” star’s movement. In her words:

“I feel like things that I feel or have felt that needed to be addressed, I actually reached out to the network, and we addressed them.”

Kandi Burruss at the 2022 BET Awards - Los Angeles

Despite her reservations about joining the strike, the Grammy Award winner is receptive to Frankel’s union idea. To that end, she explained as cited by ET:

“That would be nice, if there was a union for unscripted people, that would be nice. I mean, obviously, I’m a part of the union for scripted television and I do think that it’s great to see people be able to get residuals, you know, some healthcare and some type of future. So I think if that was possible, it would be nice.”

Just before she shared the above, she had taken time to denounce having anything to do with the legal letter that a group of yet-to-identified reality stars sent to NBCUniversal and Bravo, alleging that they were subjected to “grotesque and depraved mistreatment.” 

Claiming that they represent “a significant number of individuals” who NBC had “mentally, physically, and financially victimized,” attorneys Mark Geragos and Bryan Friedman disclosed that their clients could “ruin” the network if they “decide to speak out about their mistreatment.” Defending herself, Burruss said:

“I myself wouldn’t not be a part of that. It wouldn’t make any sense for me to be a part of that. To me, if I’m working with somebody, and I feel like they’re not doing something that they should be doing, I address it right then. I don’t feel like you should wait for after.”

“So me, any problems or thoughts or concerns I’ve had, I’ve said them. I speak up, you can tell I speak up,” she expressed further.

Porsha Williams Has No Problem Joining A Union For Reality Television Stars

Porsha Williams at DIRECTV Presents MaximBet Electric Nights at City Market

Unlike her “Real Housewives of Atlanta” co-star, Williams is all for joining the strikes. As reported by The Blast, the mother-of-one had opened up about Frankel’s remarks inspiring the idea of reality stars forming their own union and partaking in a strike, stating:

“I can respect a lot of what Bethenny had to say, actually. I mean, why would I have any problem with her speaking up for reality stars? I just would want some of the reality stars who are currently doing that job to speak up.”

The 42-year-old then underscored the difficulty of extricating oneself from certain contracts that might exploit their image and prioritize dramatic content for entertainment purposes. Additionally, Williams noted the efforts of individuals such as herself and Frankel, who strived to establish their own brands despite the challenges posed by these contractual constraints.

After highlighting the influence that reality show editors wield over cast members’ narratives, particularly evident in franchises like “The Real Housewives,” Williams emphasized how producers can manipulate portrayals. This move from them could potentially undermine the brands individuals are striving to establish outside the shows.

The “Dish Nation” co-host noted the dilemma faced by reality personalities, declaring that a reality strand on-screen image may diverge from the intended persona, leading fans to question authenticity and likability.

Willams’ passionate approach to the strikes came shortly after she returned from a family vacation with her man, Simon Guobadia, and her daughter, Pilar Jhena “PJ” McKinley. She ensured that fans got their fill through her multiple Instagram Story updates, including a view of them arriving at the airport and their trip to dinner and then a club, where they partied nonstop.

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