We’d heard the stories and seen the drama on screen (thanks to a special preview screening) but nothing prepared us for the real-life tension between the cast of the Real Housewives of Auckland.
Sitting down with the six society ladies at an exclusive media lunch in Auckland this week, we couldn’t help but notice two distinct camps.
On one table, Michelle Blanchard, Gilda Kirkpatrick and Anne Batley Burton were glamorous in classic black and statement jewels. On the other, Louise Wallace, Angela Stone and Julia Sloane, opted for light and bright ensembles.
But it wasn’t until the group went to pose for Spy’s cameras that the tension boiled over. A snarky comment from Stone saw one housewife walk out, leaving the remaining trio to smile awkwardly and prompting Blanchard to hiss at Stone: “You f***ed it up.”
Earlier in the week, Stone told the Herald she wasn’t prepared for how nasty things had turned between the group.
“I do feel that I’ve been personally attacked,” she said.
The series, which is set to premiere tomorrow night on Bravo and TV3, promises to be explosive television.
But anyone who thinks the ladies are in it for the money is very much mistaken, according to Wallace, who says the series has “cost me a friggin’ fortune!”.
It turns out keeping up appearances is an expensive business, with the cast members responsible for their own hair and make-up throughout the series shoot.
Spy understands finances are at the centre of the tension between the two camps, with the more affluent cast members less than impressed by those they consider to be rich list-wannabes.
However, one housewife denied that was the issue, saying simply that she couldn’t handle idiots.
Tomorrow night the housewives will gather at Snap Dragon at Auckland’s Viaduct with friends and frenemies alike to watch the first episode, which delivers high drama in the form of a verbal stand-off, leaving one of them in tears — and insiders say things only deteriorate from there.
On Wednesday Batley Burton and Wallace head to Sydney on a press junket for the show, flying the Kiwi housewife flag for viewers across the Tasman.