NeNe Leakes has to be used to controversy as one of Bravo's "Real Housewives of Atlanta," so it isn't a surprise to us that her stint on NBC's "Celebrity Apprentice" has generated some headlines of its own. We met up with NeNe after her appearance on the KTLA News Morning Show to talk about the NBC show and the headlines it's generating for her.
"Going into 'Celebrity Apprentice,' I didn't have any strategies," NeNe tells Zap2it. "I was a little scared going there. I saw Donald and I thought that he was scary. You know, mean-mugging you and not really smiling. So, I was really scared of that. I just went in, thinking to myself that I'm just here to fight for my charity and I don't want to be voted off first. That's all I thought."
Of course, things sounds like they got complicated very quickly. Recently, NeNe appeared on "The Wendy Williams Show" and said former "The View" co-host and "Apprentice" cast mate Star Jones is "special," but not in a good way. In response, Star said that NeNe contributed to the stereotype of the "bombastic black woman" and that she intimidated the other African American women on the show.
"I'm not surprised that Star used the 'black women need to get along. Oh, she's just being a black woman being mad or yelling or whatever,'" NeNe says. "She has no fault in this. So, let's just say that. You can not argue by yourself."
In fact, NeNe tells us she tried to get along with Star at first and that they actually hung out several times. But when it comes to sisterly bonding, NeNe says Star should be the last person to talk as she tried to pit their cast mate LaToya Jackson, who the real housewife says she still talks to, against her.
"I had a disagreement with LaToya," she says. "But you will see in the show [that] Latoya and I learn really quickly that disagreement was because of something Star had said or done and she was trying to put us against each other. And we learned that was happening and we both confronted her on it."
So, what is the root of NeNe and Star's conflicts with each other? NeNe has a theory.
"She may have gone to Harvard. She may have ten degrees, but it's funny she's in the same place I'm in," NeNe says. "And that is what bothers Star - that she went to school for eight or ten years and she has to stand beside me."
"I'm like this, if you are a b***h, own it. Be a b***h 24 hours, own that. Be that," she says. "If you're ghetto, be ghetto. It's the fake phoniness B.S. that really makes me sick. I don't care what you are, just be it. Star, to me, is phony. Now, somebody else has an opinion on her, fine. I'm telling you what these two eyes saw. And these are my two eyes. If you don't like them, you can pop them out and give me two more."
If that's any indication of what we're in for this season on "Celebrity Apprentice," count us in.
If you missed NeNe on KTLA, watch her interview below:
"Celebrity Apprentice" premieres Sunday, March 6 at 9 p.m. on NBC.
Photo/Video credit: Jethro Nededog, Zap2it; KTLA