Why did you leave Bravo?
It was more about creative differences and the brand needed to grow. We wanted to take the show on the road and do a lot of different things to it and we really couldn’t. I love Bravo — the brand is great over there, but I needed to spread my wings. I really did. There was a bidding war. When I looked at WE tv’s increases, I fell in love (WE tv president) [Marc Juris] and (EVP) Lauren [Gellert]. They saw me as a relationship queen — a big, big star. I wasn’t sure if I could grow at Bravo, because of the Housewives brand. I think that with Tinder, Hinge, [and] all these new dating sites, the world is changing. We had the biggest season, because I pushed and forced them to do celebrities. It was a really big deal — I fought for that for five years. With Hilary Duff and all these celebs online, dating online is not for the dateless and desperate. Dating online is not a bad word. We want to get millennials to get and watch and buy TV.
Was the move to WE tv about the money?
No. WE was very generous, but it wasn’t only about money. I had been there eight years. When you break up with a boyfriend, it’s because it’s not working. I thought we could have gotten two’s and three’s, and really blown the house off the ratings, but I was always blocked from my ideas. In an amicable breakup, you still talk to your ex boyfriend. I will still talk to (Bravo President) Frances [Berwick] and (EVP) Shari Levine, and all of the people that were there. WE will be my home. If WE passes on producing, I will take it over to Bravo — that’s what you do. If you leave the door open, you know, I’m not Chelsea Handler, I’m not walking away from NBC because I hate [them]. They built me up they were my mother and father.
Did Andy Cohen call you?
No. Frances, Shari, my publicist, [and] all the people at the network wrote me beautiful notes, and we still love each other. I never heard from Andy. I don’t think he likes me — I don’t think he ever liked me because I took Jill [Zarin]‘s side in the fight [with Bethenny Frankel]. I think he picked Bethenny’s side in the fight. We had to work together, [and] I’ve tried numerous times to produce with him. I reached out to him many times. I don’t hate him; he’s a creative genius. Look, he has A-lister friends, I don’t. I have billionaires as friends, I don’t have SJP and DVF. Maybe I’m not cool enough for him.
What can you tell us about the show you’re creating?
I can’t tell you the format [or] what it’s called. It’s top top secret! We are going to take it up a lot of freaking notches… like The Bachelorette in a different way. We are going to give the fans what they want, not what we want. I’m changing my life and my business at the same time!
We will keep you updated on her new show — are you excited?
— Emily Longeretta