The executive who developed the successful Real Housewives shows, Andy Cohen, is now speaking out for the first time about Russell Armstrong's suicide and defends how the network decided to handle the death and the show. Andy sat down with Access Hollywood this morning and reminded the hosts what the show is really about.
It is about following regular housewives in all aspects of life, good and bad. It is not about scripted drama and it is not about who is richer than others or who has the best marriage. And with 10 failed marriages and 2 bankruptcies, it is clear to see that the show is choosing regular people.
When the hosts ask Andy about the suicide that rocked the reality TV world last August, he explains that it took lots of talking to decide how to handle the death. It wasn't just about the network and the immediate family. Andy explains that producers, cast members, families of the cast, the public and everyone involved or touched by the show in one way or another was talked to about how to move forward. In fact, Andy claims that Bravo had a 3-to-4-week lockdown after Russell's death to deal with the issue.
And surely this wasn't an easy thing, especially when it came to editing the entire season. Rather than focusing on Russell's down-spiral which eventually led to his suicide, the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills season is instead focusing on a woman who is a victim of domestic abusive and how her friends are reacting to it.
And Bravo made the right decision; at least they got a 42% increase for the season premiere where they addressed the suicide.