For the first time in the franchise's history, stars from all of the Love & Hip Hop cities came together to film VH1 Family Reunion: Love & Hip Hop Edition in a quarantine bubble. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, VH1's Love & Hip Hop was not filming any episodes for their franchises in Atlanta, Hollywood, Miami, and New York. However, while the shows were put on hiatus until further notice, some of the reality show's stars reunited after months of being in quarantine for this new limited series.
The cast includes Love & Hip Hop's Apryl Jones, Bambi, Erica Dixon, Fizz, Joy Young, Judy Harris, Karlie Redd, to name a few. Other Love & Hip Hop stars who appear are Momma Dee, Mendeecees, Ray J, and Paris Phillips, in addition to Scrappy, Trick Daddy, Trina, Sierra Gates, Yandy Smith-Harris, and Yung Joc. Some of the Love & Hip Hop stars even bought a few of their family members.
Though episodes of the new season are currently airing, when exactly did the cast film?
When was 'VH1 Family Reunion: Love & Hip Hop Edition' filmed?
In March of last year, Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta returned for a ninth season, and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, cast members started filming their green screen confessional scenes while quarantined at home. On May 11, 2020, the mid-season finale aired, and viewers were shocked when at the end of the episode, cast members were told that production had to stop filming, and that was the last time the franchise filmed the show.
Then in December, it was announced by Page Six that a Love & Hip Hop All-Star Reunion spinoff was in production and would air sometime in the new year. While it's not known exactly when VH1 Family Reunion: Love & Hip Hop Edition was filmed, we can guess that the reality show was probably shot between November and December. During most of the episodes, everyone is wearing long sleeves, sweaters, jackets, and pants most of the time, so it appears that the weather in Arizona was on the colder side.
When some of the ladies were hanging out by the pool in Episode 4, nobody is seen swimming or donning a bikini. That makes us think that it can't be the end of summer and that it's winter. The weather in the part of Arizona where the reunion was shot is cooler from November to the end of February, so there's a possibility that the cast could have filmed sometime between November and December.
The reality stars could have filmed in January, but that would make the turnaround time rather quick to get the show airing. It seems most likely that all seven episodes were edited in January after having been filmed earlier, in preparation for the February premiere date.
Another clue that the show was shot between November and December comes from the cast's Instagrams. On Nov. 14, Sierra Gates shared a photo, which included several cast members, with the caption, "Wowwwww [Karlie Redd] really took us to Trinidad in the middle of Arizona."
Where in Arizona was 'VH1 Family Reunion: Love & Hip Hop Edition' filmed?
VH1 Family Reunion: Love & Hip Hop Edition cast members used the hotel and resort El Conquistador, located in Tucson, Ariz., as their very own quarantine playground. Fans were surprised when the reunion was announced, mainly because most television filming had been suspended. However, constant testing and quarantining at the El Conquistador allowed the reality stars to film safely.
In an interview with In Touch Weekly, Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta star Sierra Gates talked about repairing her friendship with fellow cast member Karlie Redd and the reunion series. She shared, “Love & Hip Hop never came together as a family ... the viewers always try to separate us. So I feel like this just gave a time to show that we can be as one. I feel like that’s why it’s important, so [fans] don’t keep trying to put us in our own little worlds.”
Family Reunion: Love & Hip Hop Edition airs Monday nights at 8 p.m. ET on VH1.