Kim Zolciak-Biermann has broken her silence after being cited in a lawsuit filed by her former RHOA co-star, NeNe Leakes, against the network, NBCUniversal, Andy Cohen, and Real Housewives of Atlanta producers.
Kim spoke out for the first time about the legal skirmish on Saturday’s episode of OWN’s The Nightcap with Carlos King. The former Don’t Be Tardy star denied that she ever made racist remarks while filming the Georgia franchise.
“[NeNe] knows what she’s saying is not true in regards to me,” Kim told King. “That’s ridiculous, and she knows it.”
“I’ll deal with her when she’s done with them,” added the former Bravo star. ”You can’t say things that aren’t true and try to defame somebody.”
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NeNe, 54, and Kim, 44, shared a rollercoaster relationship that started before Bravo cameras began filming the pair for the first season of RHOA, in 2008. The duo went through ups and downs during the early seasons, but appeared to be in a good place when Kim left the show after Season 5.
“There’s always this level of respect between NeNe and I no matter what’s gone on,” Kim said before she hugged NeNe during the Season 5 reunion series. ”We knew each other before this … and we make each other madder than anybody else.”
Things went downhill from there. Behind-the-scenes drama doomed an announced spinoff series starring NeNe and Kim. Kim came back to RHOA as a “friend” for Season 10, but her friendship with NeNe went south after Kim’s daughter filmed scurrying bugs in NeNe’s bathroom and posted the clip on social media. Kim claimed that NeNe lived in a “roach nest” which kicked off the “RoachGate” controversy. NeNe called Kim a racist, and other RHOA cast members agreed that her remark was racially dicey. Kim denied the allegation and declared that she was taking legal action against NeNe. Both women vowed that their friendship was over.
Things took a positive turn in the fall of 2018, when Kim offered support to her former friend amid NeNe’s husband, Gregg Leakes’ initial cancer diagnosis. Kim also reached out after Gregg passed away, in September 2021. The former reality stars currently follow each other on Instagram.
NeNe announced her departure from the show ahead of Season 12, in September 2020.
In April, NeNe filed a lawsuit against Bravo, NBCUniversal, Andy Cohen, True Entertainment, and Truly Original.
The former Bravo star alleged that “a corporate and workplace culture in which racially-insensitive and inappropriate behavior is tolerated – if not, encouraged” was promoted.
NeNe claimed that she was ousted after she told executives that former co-star, Kim Zolciak-Biermann, made racist remarks while filming the show.
“As the Black Lives Matter movement swept our nation, Mrs. Leakes — Bravo’s historically most successful Black female talent — should have been embraced by NBC, Bravo, and True,” her lawsuit read. “Instead, NBC, Bravo, and True forced her out of the ‘house she built,’ denying her a regular role.”
“Executives “did not terminate their relationship with Zolciak-Biermann, nor take any other meaningful action to put an end to her racially-offensive behavior” but instead gave her a spinoff show, the suit alleges.
Kim’s spinoff series, Don’t Be Tardy, aired for eight seasons on Bravo. Bravo, Cohen nor any of the other defendants have commented on the case.
Kim reconnected with RHOA Season 1 co-stars, DeShawn Snow, Lisa Wu, and Sheree Whitfield for the first time in more than 14 years on Saturday’s episode of “The Nightcap.”
Raissa Asunbo is a Content Editor at All About The Tea. She lives in Toronto, Canada and enjoys reading, watching movies, traveling and spending time with her family.