Before its Season 14 premiere, The Real Housewives of Atlanta fans wondered who would replace longtime cast members Cynthia Bailey and Porsha Williams. After confirming Marlo Hampton and Sanya Richards-Ross would be joining the cast to replace Cynthia and Porsha, the rumors continued swirling about Kandi Burruss’s fate on the show.
Reports share that The Real host Jeannie Mai was slated to join the ensemble cast and replace Kandi, as Jeannie was set to move from L.A. to Atlanta. But, with so many rumors growing legs and Bravo executives choosing to remain mum, it’s hard to figure out what to believe. So, will Jeannie become the newest peach holder? Here’s what we know.
Is Jeannie Mai Jenkins joining ‘RHOA’ Season 14 as a guest or peach holder?
While the idea of Jeanie becoming the second Asian Housewife on the Atlanta series sounds pretty tempting, it appears that rumors of her joining the cast are just that: rumors.
In a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight, RHOA fan favorite Kandi Burruss took a moment to give fans insight about Jeannie joining the cast.
"I didn't understand. I don't know who makes these rumors up," Kandi told the outlet. "I think somebody secretly wants to get rid of me or something. I'm like, 'Too late. I already filmed Season 14.’”
As ET reporter Nischelle Turner asked about the rumors of Jeannie coming to replace Kandi, the entrepreneur set the record straight.
"Now here's the thing, I'm cool with Jeannie," Kandi said. "And I love her. So, please, I would love for her to come on. Like for the next [season]. I don't know if somebody wants her to come through. I mean, it would be great to see her. I would love for her to be a part ... We're friends, so let me be the one to bring her on."
Jeannie Mai Jenkins says there’s no chance of her joining ‘RHOA.’
Like her friend Kandi, Jeannie also said she has no idea where the rumors she’s joining RHOA started. She discussed the chatter with co-host Loni Love and guest and current Housewife Kenya Moore on The Real. After Loni brought up the speculation, Jeannie rolled her eyes before stating that she wouldn't be joining RHOA anytime soon.
"That was crazy,” Jeannie said onstage. “I literally was just over here having a baby, and I’m hearing these rumors, I was like, ‘Where? How am I going to go from this into that because that’s a full-time job.'"
Jeannie and her husband Jeezy welcomed their first child together, a baby girl named Monaco, in January 2022. Between juggling her new role as a mom and finishing the final season of her talk show, the fashion guru simply doesn’t have the time or energy to add reality TV to her resume, despite her friendships with Kandi, Kenya, and the other RHOA ladies.
Although Jeannie declared neither she nor her people “talked to one person from Bravo,” Kenya said she thinks she would make a “great Housewife.” After discussing it further, she stated her disinterest again and shared how Garcelle Beauvais’ time on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills affected her decision.
"The door is closed,” Jeannie professed. “It’s sealed. There wasn’t a door, to begin with. It was a wall, there is no door. No, and I say that, just because it’s a lot of work. And even knowing Garcelle [Beauvais], I always ask her, ‘How do you get your mind in the place of going in to shoot and you’re not ready for what might come at you?' And she tells me too, 'It’s a full-time job.'"
Catch new episodes of The Real Housewives of Atlanta on Bravo Sundays at 8 p.m. EST.