Dave Rupel discusses the end of the season, and attempts to answer your burning questions, in this week's blog.
Wow. How time flies. It feels like just yesterday we had our (off-camera) kick-off dinner with the cast before we began shooting, and now, here I am blogging about the finale. It’s been a wild and challenging year, but I am grateful that the audience has embraced the show so warmly.
I’m not gonna lie. We work very long hours in the reality TV world, and it’s a lot more fun to be on a hit show than one nobody is watching! So thanks to all you fans for tuning in each week!
About the finale: Once again, I have to give a shout out to our awesome crew, who never failed to amaze me with their constant ingenuity and creativity.
First, at the Tony Awards, we weren’t allowed to shoot at the Awards, and were surprised when Radio City Music Hall wouldn’t let us shoot the red carpet arrivals, which we really wanted to show off Kelsey’s big star turn. But Producer Christopher Cullen quickly solved the problem by having Kelsey roll down his limo window so we could hear the audience’s thrill of seeing him in person. And I am forever wowed by the final image of Kelsey and Camille getting out of opposite doors of the limo–so symbolic of what was happening with their marriage.
And now about that other limo ride… the one with Kim and Kyle. Major props to Camera Operator Beth Kochendorfer and Audio Mixer Jenny Green for capturing all that drama in the limo! If there was an Emmy category for reality camerawork, Beth would have won it hands down for her flawless work in that limo.
As for what was said in the limo, well, Kyle’s outburst was a long time in coming. Perhaps now all the people who think Kyle is too mean to Kim will understand her constant frustration with her sister.
Now, on to your questions!
Question: Viewer Don’t Quit found Camille to be quite likable on Watch What Happens Live and hopes that that version of Camille is back for Season 2.
Answer: I could not agree more, DQ! The best thing about Camille’s appearance, to me, was that she had a sense of humor about herself. Nothing is more charming than that.
Similarly, when Taylor was on WWHL and a question came up about her lips, she turned the negative into a positive by slyly asking if Andy wanted to feel them, which turned into a very funny and playful moment. (Note to any potential reality stars reading this! You will be much better served if you don’t blame the editing, and have the ability to poke a little fun at yourself!)
Q: Angelanna has softened toward Camille so much that she wrote an apology on Camille’s blog and wants to make sure it’s posted.
A: I don’t post the comments to the Bravo blog, Bravo does that, but Camille has received many such similar sentiments on her blog’s comments.
Q: Alicia373 thought the scene in New York was incredibly awkward and perplexing.
A: I couldn’t agree more! For the life of me, I’ll never understand why Kelsey agreed to film with us the day of the Tonys. He had a matinee of his show, and as a presenter at the Tonys, he also had that rehearsal. He could’ve easily made a case that it would be too difficult to squeeze in shooting with us. And remember, at that time, we didn’t know that divorce had already been mentioned to Camille. But he knew. What he hoped to gain from allowing us to film, I’ll never know. But I’m sure glad he did! It’s fascinating to watch as a casual viewer, though as someone who knows Camille quite well, it’s really difficult to watch.
I do have to go on record that Kelsey was nothing but nice and professional with me. I do wish–for Camille’s sake–he would’ve handled the divorce differently.
Q: Rachel Wisdom describes herself as an introvert and praises the ladies for opening up their lives to the cameras. . .and the criticism.
A: Well said, Rachel. If you’ve been reading all my blogs, you’ll see that no one is a bigger cheerleader for the ladies than me. Opening yourself up to nationwide criticism is hard.
Q: Barb Whyer liked the photo I included and quoted Paris by calling me “hot.”
A: Well, how flattering is that?! Thanks for the kind words, but I have several–and by several, I actually mean more than ten–pounds to lose before I will feel even decent looking. (There was a reason I was standing behind Lisa and not beside her!)
Q: Emily-Bo-Bemily, Jason B and LaLaLi wanted to know about the interviews and how often we do them?
A: During production, we try to interview each woman every other week. We would have them sit in the same pose, wearing the same clothes for three to four rounds of interviews. The reason we did this was that some people find it distracting when you have a scene and you see interview clips from one woman wearing 3 different things. Of course, I also get that it throws people to have a woman in the same outfit talking about an event before it happens and afterward. Not quite sure how we’ll deal with this issue in the future.
During the season, the interviews are conducted by my three producers, Brenda Coston, Christopher Cullen, and Larry Grimaldi. When the show officially wraps production, we continue to do occasional “pick-up” interviews, going over things we missed. (It’s impossible not to miss something, as usually Bravo has very specific questions they want answered.) During the off-season, I conduct the interviews.
Q: D Girl wants to know how many cameras we had rolling at Camille’s, specifically wondering how it was possible that we never seemed to miss a reaction shot of Camille. Plus, how did we know to leave a camera behind to shoot Camille, Allison, and D.D. after the party fell apart?
A: Camille’s dinner party was a fun night for the crew because it was one of the rare nights we had all three teams shooting the same event. That’s a great deal of camaraderie among the crew, so it was a treat that we could all be together. Three crews translates to six cameras–but that doesn’t mean we had six cameras rolling at the dinner table all at once–usually there were three to four.
The way the day broke down: A crew started the day at Camille’s to cover the party prep. B crew was in the limo with Kyle, Kim and Faye, while C crew covered the limo ride with Adrienne, Lisa and Taylor. Once at Camille’s, A crew handled the patio, B crew took the kitchen for appetizers, and then we had three and sometimes four camera coverage for the dinner. Meaning one camera focused on the Faye-Kim-Adrienne-Allison side of the table, and the second focused on the Kyle-Taylor-Lisa-D.D. side. A third camera was at the far end of the table, so that it could get wides of the whole table or push in straight to focus on Camille. So that means Camille–at the head of the table, as the party host–was on-camera the entire dinner.
The party itself lasted a good three or four hours. But because we had already been doing pre-shoots earlier in the day, we had to rotate crews to get meal breaks during the dinner. (The A crew broke for dinner when everyone was getting along fine, and were quite shocked to hear all the yelling when they came back from break.)
After the party broke-up, the three crews again split up. A crew stayed behind for the Camille-Allison-D.D. conversation, B crew got in the limo with Kyle-Lisa-Taylor-Adrienne-Faye and C crew got in the limo with Kim.
We didn’t know Kyle and Faye were going to ditch the limo with Kim, but it was always our plan to cover every moment from start-to-finish.
Q: HousewifeFan54 understands my sympathy for Camille’s divorce, but wonders where my support is for the thousands of single mothers that don’t have Camille’s finances to make the situation easier?
A: When I blog, or answer questions about RHBH, I generally am just referring to events on the show and not discussing things in a broader context. Of course, Camille’s money will allow her to aid her kids through the divorce process in ways struggling single moms cannot. I’m from a middle class family, and my sister went through a pretty brutal divorce and I saw first-hand how much she struggled to take care of my two nieces. Happily, my sister is remarried now, but I understand your point. I think my initial sympathy toward Camille and this situation was about her kids Mason and Jude, who were seven and five when the divorce news broke. I guess my take was that they are too young to understand the money their family has and how it affects their lives. All they really wanted was for their parents to be together–and to me, that makes them like every other youngster out there.
Q: Jenn121121 loves Lisa’s sense of humor and wonders if Lisa ever pranked the crew?
A: Early on in episode 109 (Dinner Party from Hell), you see Camille calling the ladies to invite them to the party. When she called Lisa, she got her voicemail, but as you saw, Lisa has a recording on her machine that makes it sounds like she’s talking to you live, but is having trouble hearing you. It goes on for quite a while, and I can’t even begin to describe how many times I fell for that!
In episode 105 (first half of the NYC trip), the episode opens with a very early morning excursion of Lisa and Cedric going to the flower mart in downtown Los Angeles. The crew had an incredibly early call-time and rang the bell at her gate at 4 am, as they were supposed to. A very grouchy Lisa answered, chastising them, saying she was asleep and “what the hell are you doing here so early?” The crew was mortified, not knowing Lisa was, in fact, fully dressed and ready to shoot, and giggling up a storm inside.
Nothing makes Lisa happier than pulling off one of her pranks.
Q: Deerum enjoys my blog and wonders if I’d consider being a guest on Andy’s Watch What Happens Live show?
A: I will admit, I’ve enjoyed blogging more than I ever thought I would–especially love the interactive quality of answering your questions. But I think my star wattage is a little low for Andy’s show. For people who don’t read my blog, they’d be looking at me sideways, saying, “who the hell is that in the clubhouse?!”
Q: Boston Fan wants to know if we’ll find out the reason behind all the animosity between Kim and Kyle at the Reunion.
A: Boston, if you watched our season finale, you should be a lot more clued in to the underlying issues in the Richards’ sisters dynamic.Q: Robin Dee Cradle (funny handle!) isn’t a fan of Taylor and thinks Camille would be more well-liked if Taylor would’ve kept her mouth shut in NYC.
A: This issue is discussed at length both in the finale and during the Reunion.
Q: Droidette doesn’t understand why the Hiltons didn’t attend any of Kyle’s events this season. Does it have something to do with Paris’ career in reality?
A: To be fair to Kathy, Rick, Paris, and Nicky, RHBH was an unknown quantity when we were shooting this season. No one knew if we were going to be a great show, or a disaster. And yes, Paris is used to be the starring person in her projects, not a featured player. So her reluctance to be on camera is understandable in the bigger Hollywood scheme of things. Missing Portia’s second birthday is one thing. Portia was too young to know the difference. But it really was upsetting to Kyle that her whole family couldn’t be there to celebrate Farrah’s graduation.
Q: RHBeverlyHillsFan saw my interview in SacTown magazine and it made her tune into the show. Fan wants to know if we had a big party with the cast after we finished shooting?
A: If you saw the finale, you are aware that no one was in the mood to party at the end of that night. So no, we didn’t have a wrap party, but several months later, we did have an awesome premiere party at hotspot Trousdale where cast and crew got to celebrate together. Cameras weren’t rolling, and I have to admit, I’m kind of glad. Rumor is I may have gotten onstage and grinded a few cast members. But like I said, our cameras weren’t there, so that’s really just a rumor I can’t confirm.
Q: NEViewer wants to know if any of our single Housewives would consider being on Millionaire Matchmaker.
A: Andy suggested that to Camille when she was on WWHL. She said she was open to the idea.
Q: Bame wants to know how the cast came to be, and if they have any say in the lines they speak in the main titles.
A: As for the opening titles, each lady recorded several lines that seemed to be representative of their lives. We had no idea that so many people were going to react so negatively to Camille’s line in the wake of her divorce to Kelsey. And Lisa would prefer a much funnier line – maybe she’ll get that next year (assuming there is a next season.)
And about the cast, we have a casting department that does everything imaginable to get the word out that we are looking and tries to meet every interesting person possible. But I will add, much of the cast came out of Kyle, who was the first person to sign on. Kyle led us to her sister Kim, and her good friend Lisa, who in turn led us to her neighbor Adrienne, who was already friends with Taylor. Finally, when Bravo really hoped we could add a celebrity’s wife, it was Kyle who suggested Camille, whom she knew because of Mauricio’s job as Kelsey and Camille’s realtor.
Q: Ashley wants longer reunion shows!
A: We will air hour one of our reunion on Thursday, January 27 and hour two will air on Tuesday, February 1.
Q: PGHGolfer wants to know about the pink champagne the ladies drink?
A: I’m assuming you are referring to what Lisa often serves at Villa Blanca. It’s her own Villa Blanca brand of rose. I’ve had it, and it’s fantastic!
Q: Huge Fan wants to know what Taylor does for a living?
A: Taylor works as a business consultant. Meaning, she is contracted by a company where she studies their business model and explains to them ways they can produce their product more efficiently. Business stories are notoriously hard to tell on reality shows. Fact it, much of it isn’t very juicy or exciting, which is why so little of it usually winds up in the show.
Q: Finally, Austin_Diva is hopeful that Camille won’t return next season.
A: I’ve got to disagree with you, Austin. I hope all six women come back next season! We had a very successful season one and I hope everyone sticks around next year!
Until next week when I dish on the first hour of the Reunion…there is a trailer for the explosive reunion running on the Bravotv website. It’s an awesome teaser that was cut by one of our editors, Jess Bushyhead. Check it out!