Andy Cohen’s rise to fame is courtesy of his popular Bravo Housewives franchise. The show premiered with a cast from Orange County. The Real Housewives of Atlanta soon followed and now there are shows in some of the top cities in the country, including New York, New Jersey, Potomac, Beverly Hills, Dallas and Salt Lake City.
With the exception of Atlanta, most of the cast are predominately white, or feature non-people of color. Despite such, Atlanta remains the top-rated of the franchise. For years, fans have complained about the lack of Black women cast on the shows. Amid the Black Lives Matter Movement picking up steam, a call for diversity in television grew louder and Bravo took note.
Actress Garcelle Beauvais was the first Black full-timer to be cast on Beverly Hills in the show’s 10th season. In New York, attorney and commentator Eboni K. Williams was added to the current season 13.
Beauvais enjoys being on the show and representing a successful Black woman who lives and works in Beverly Hills but says Cohen took time in adding cast members of color to some of the shows.
“I think part of the things is, I think that it was a bad cycle because then the longer you waited the more you wanted to get it absolutely perfect when you did cast a woman of color,” she told Cohen on a recent episode of her podcast Going to Bed With Garcelle. “You wanted that person to succeed.”
Cohen said he tried previously to diversify the cast but couldn’t find the right fit. Still, he says, it’s no excuse. “But the true answer is there is no excuse. It’s bad and there is not an excuse, and so I could spitball here and try to come up with twenty, but it sucks and there’s no excuse.”