‘RHOA’: Andy Cohen Says Porsha Williams Was Almost Fired

For 12 seasons, the ladies on The Real Housewives of Atlanta have kept fans entertained with their friendships, fights, love lives, and personal battles. Over the years, cast members have come and gone, but there are a few who have stayed on and managed to garner their own fan bases. Porsha Williams is one of them, but believe it or not, she was almost handed a pink slip, and it’s not for the reason you may think.

Andy Cohen and Porsha Williams
Andy Cohen and Porsha Williams | Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Porsha Williams’ time on ‘RHOA’ was nearly cut short

When we say her RHOA time could have been “cut short,” we mean in the early stages. Bravo’s Andy Cohen stopped by Jenny McCarthy’s podcast on Jan. 31 and dished on the show. He shared a tale about Atlanta housewife Porsha Williams and how things were up in the air with her future on the franchise.

While fans may believe that had something to do with Phaedra spreading the rumor that Kandi tried to date rape Williams, that’s not the case. Cohen said things were iffy in the beginning:

“At the end of Porsha’s first season, she was at the reunion and it’d just been announced like a day before Kordell [Stewart] was leaving her. And there was a fairly health dialogue amongst the producers about whether Porsha was gonna come back at that time. This was the end of her first season and she got up there at that reunion, and I was watching her and I was like, ‘Oh my God. I stand for Porsha. That was incredible!’ And she cemented her place on the show.”

He added that she gave a two-minute soliloquy about her life and how the situation with Kordell wouldn’t define her moving forward. Cohen said he totally underestimated her at the time but look at her now.

Williams was demoted that one time

Fans may remember back to the season six reunion when Williams and Kenya Moore got into an argument and then verbal fight escalated. That was the year Moore was waving a bullhorn around and shouting at Williams with it, and she charged at Moore, grabbed her hair and started a tussle.

Not only was Williams escorted off the reunion set, but Moore pressed assault charges against her. For season seven, Williams was demoted to a “friend of the show.” She’s obviously worked her way back up to holding a peach.  

How are the cast members’ fates decided?

Cohen touched on the process for determining which housewives will get to return for another season across all the franchises, and shared that producers discuss the direction of storylines all the time. He also admitted that minds are definitely changed during the reunion specials—as was the case with Porsha—and jobs are either saved or taken away.

In addition to those steps, he says he does indeed check his Twitter feed (for all the shows) but Bravo conducts focus groups to get an idea of what’s working and what’s not. He says that typically, the results are in line with what producers are expecting, but every so often they learn some cast members “are more popular than we realize.”