Bravo New Zealand is defending casting former Real Housewives of Auckland star Gilda Kirkpatrick in a new show just days after fans criticized their decision, pointing to controversial tweets to prove their point.
As local New Zealand media outlet The Spinoff reported just last week (November 6), not all fans are happy with the network’s decision to re-invest in Gilda with a new special called Get Housewived. Gilda starred on RHOAKL when it premiered back in 2016.
According to their report, Bravo’s social media posts have been flooded with negative comments about the casting, alluding to past comments on Gilda’s social media that have referenced minorities and the LGBTQ+ community.
Former Real Housewives of Auckland star Gilda Kirkpatrick (second from left) is working on a new special with Bravo New Zealand called Get Housewived. Fans have since expressed their disappointment, pointing to her alleged anti-gay tweets.
“Uh are you comfortable with the views Gilda publicly expresses about minorities?” posted one user on Bravo’s announcement about the upcoming show.
A quick look at the Instagram post reveals that some fans feel that the network has been deleting any negative comments, making the situation worse.
“Y’all will delete comments but enable transphobia, speak up!” posted one user.
“Why are you deleting our comments just check her Twitter we speak the truth,” another added.
The Spinoff chose not to reprint any of Gilda’s tweets but a quick look at her page shows that she was constantly tweeting about social issues. As of posting, her Twitter account shows just under 5,000 followers and almost 30,000 tweets.
Gilda speaks out
Bravo New Zealand posted a statement from Gilda on their Instagram page, where she expressed disappointment in the allegations while not directly refuting any of them.
“I am disappointed and saddened to have recently received some inaccurate accusations,” the Get Housewived star posted to Twitter, with the network re-sharing the statement on Instagram.
“I am a strong advocate of the LGBTQI+ community and will continue to support my trans and gay friends. In New Zealand, I feel very privileged to live in a society that supports and celebrates LGBTQI communities and I do not condone transphobic or homophobic behaviour.”
Network announces new show
Just last week, the network confirmed that Gilda and her former Real Housewives of Auckland co-star Michelle Blanchard will be starring in a new, one-off special called Get Housewived.
The show is set to premiere sometime next year and will feature the former reality stars giving a makeover to one lucky family.
“We hope our NZ audiences enjoy this feel-good special featuring some of their favorite Housewives of Auckland,” Executive Chris Taylor said in a statement.
“It is such a genius idea to have our fabulous Real Housewives Of Auckland reunite to bring some much-needed glitz and glamour to the lives of others. What could possibly go wrong?” added RHOAKL producer Alistair McKinnon in the same statement.
The network, for their part, also made the announcement on social media, which is what has caused the backlash.
“Look out New Zealand, ‘coz you’re about to Get Housewife’d!” the network posted on their official Instagram page, touting the new show. “Announcing an all-new show starring original cast members from The Real Housewives of Auckland – @gilda_kirkpatrick and @michelleblanchardnz. The ladies will lead their very own mission impossible with the help of a team of experts, along with cameos from some of the original cast. Stay tuned, coming soon!”
This isn’t the first time the show, or someone affiliated with it, was hit with controversy.
Back when it aired in 2016, cast member Julia Sloane was caught by production using a racial slur towards co-star Michelle Blanchard and after the women addressed the drama head-on in front of the cameras, the series was never brought back for a second time around.
In addition to the racial controversy, it was also suspected that high production costs led to the network’s decision to hit pause on the popular docuseries. RHOAKL was produced by Matchbox Pictures, the same production company behind The Real Housewives of Melbourne, which is also currently on hiatus. (RHOMelbourne is set to return sometime in 2021 with a new season and a new cast, however.)
The Real Housewives of Auckland aired on Bravo New Zealand in 2016 and eventually aired on the U.S. version of the network, as well.