Bethenny Frankel spilled tea about cast members from “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.” During a December 2022 episode of her “ReWives” podcast, Frankel opened up about what she knows about Kathy Hilton and her sisters Kim and Kyle Richards.
Frankel used to work for the Hiltons and is a family friend, Kathy once told Bravo Insider. On her podcast, Frankel chatted with guest Tori Spelling about all things Beverly Hills and dished about how she saw a shift in the Richards family dynamic over the years.
Bethenny Frankel Said She Knows “A Lot of Secrets” About Kathy Hilton & Kim & Kyle Richards
Kim and Kyle Richards started out on “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” in 2013. Kim left the show after five seasons amid her highly-publicized substance abuse issues. In 2021, Kathy Hilton made her debut on her sisters’ Bravo reality show as a “friend“ of the Housewives, and by the end of her second season on the show, she had a falling out with her sister Kyle.
While speaking with Spelling on her podcast, Frankel noted that RHOBH started out as “a family show” with Kim and Kyle as co-stars. She added that the celebrity sisters’ tension is “authentic” and that the siblings didn’t follow the “Kardashians’ formula” of keeping family drama to themselves outside of the show.
Frankel addressed Kim Richards’ past as the top gun in the family when she was “a major child star” star in the 1970s and ‘80s, starring in TV shows and movies such as “Nanny and the Professor” and “Escape to Witch Mountain.”
“Kim was a real child star,” Frankel said. “How hard does that have to be with her going from being the one big star, she was Macaulay Culkin in her household and in L.A. Now she’s the ‘woe is me, poor substance issues’ sister on the show.”
She added that Kim was sometimes “problematic” in the family and hinted that Kyle was “mostly right” when she called her out on camera during the famous limo scene argument in season 1 during which Kyle announced that Kim was an alcoholic.
Frankel also described Kim as “a meek person who doesn’t want conflict.”
Frankel noted that back in the day, Kathy was like “another mother” to Kyle, who is 10 years her junior. “There was dynamic set early on and Kathy was the matriarch and Kyle kind of just wanted her approval and listened,” Frankel said.
“Kathy was the one who made good, she married a Hilton,“ Frankel said of Kathy’s marriage to hotel family heir Rick Hilton in the late 1970s. “Kyle was still finding her way, and young. Kathy was in charge, but Kyle came into her own on her own and I think that upset the apple cart.”
“I know a lot of secrets and I will not share any of Kyle’s secrets or the family’s secrets,” Frankel added.
Andy Cohen Once Revealed That RHOBH Was Originally Supposed to Be About the Richards Sisters
During the chat on “ReWives,” Spelling also wondered what RHOBH would have been like had the three sisters all started on it together.
“They would have come in with Kathy sort of as the boss,” Frankel replied. “And I think when Kathy came in later, she was coming into Kyle’s show. So there’s a little bit of deference between Kyle and Kathy that always will be there. … When Kyle grew up and made her own decisions and lived her own life with her own husband, that shook it all up between the families.”
Bravo host Andy Cohen previously revealed that RHOBH originally was supposed to be a show about the three Richards sisters. During an episode of “Watch What Happens Live” in June 2021, Cohen revealed, “The Housewives of Beverly Hills almost didn’t happen. It was almost a show about Kim, Kathy, and Kyle.”
Original RHOBH star Camille Grammer previously told fans it was Kyle who had a deal for a show about her sisters.
“She had a development deal with Evolution [Media] for a show with Kim and Kathy,“ Grammer wrote on social media in 2019, per Us Weekly. “Kathy backed out and there was some controversy over development. So they decided to make it ‘The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.’”
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