‘RHOBH’: Harry Hamlin Put His ‘Divorce Lawyer on Speed Dial’ After Wife Lisa Rinna Told Him She Wanted to Join the Show

Actor Harry Hamlin didn’t want his wife and fellow actress, Lisa Rinna, to sign on for Real Housewives of Beverly Hills (RHOBH) when she first told him about the series. Admittedly, the 68-year-old actor had his reservations but later came around to the idea thanks to a conversation with a Real Housewives alum. Continue reading to learn what concerned Hamlin most about Rinna joining the cast of the reality show and how he came to support his wife in her decision to go ahead with the series.  

Hamlin told Rinna ‘you can’t do this’ 

Hamlin and Rinna had been married for more than two decades — they exchanged vows in 1997 — when Rinna floated the idea of her joining a new installment of Bravo’s Real Housewives franchise to Hamlin. 

In an interview with The Daily Beast published on Dec. 16, 2019, Hamlin revealed he had been terrified at the thought of his wife joining the show because it might put their marriage in jeopardy. 

Harry Hamlin and Lisa Rinna at the Amazon Prime Video post 2018 Emmy Awards party on Sept. 17, 2018
Harry Hamlin and Lisa Rinna at the Amazon Prime Video post 2018 Emmy Awards party on Sept. 17, 2018 | Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic

“I said to Lisa, ‘You can’t do this. Everybody who does that show gets divorced. It’s a horrible, horrible thing, to do that show,’” Hamlin said. 

At that point, there had already been five previous iterations of the show featuring women living in different U.S. cities. To Hamlin’s credit, he wasn’t exactly wrong when he said people on the show go through break ups with their significant others. Many cast members involved in the franchise found themselves going through divorce proceedings. 

Eventually, Hamlin came around to the idea with Rinna first appearing in episodes of RHOBH in 2014 during Season 5. 

He put his ‘divorce lawyer on speed dial’

Hamlin didn’t mess around when Rinna wanted to take part in RHOBH. He went so far as to put his divorce attorney at the top of his contacts list.

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“I have my divorce lawyer on speed dial, and I do,” Hamlin said referring to what he told Rinna when she first mentioned doing the show. “I have had three opportunities to use him; once with Ursula, and two of my ex-wives,” he added, noting his exes Ursula Andress, Nicollette Sheridan, and Laura Johnson. “It’s the same guy every time. We send Christmas cards to each other every year.”

Bethenny Frankel changed Hamlin’s mind about ‘RHOBH’

A conversation with Bethenny Frankel — former cast member on Real Housewives of New York City, and a friend of Rinna’s — changed Hamlin’s mind on the matter. Hamlin said Frankel explained to him that appearing on the show would be a good business opportunity. 

“Bethenny convinced me from a branding point of view it would be a good thing to do,” he said before adding, “Then I was open to doing it on my own terms.”

Hamlin and Rinna have a clothing line together while Frankel created Skinnygirl, a line of low-calorie cocktails, according to People
Since Rinna joined the series, audiences have gotten an inside look at her personal life with Hamlin and their two daughters, Delilah and Amelia.

Today, Rinna’s a well-known RHOBH cast member known for dancing (she shows off her moves on Instagram and is known for liking to dance on tables). Rinna is set to return for Season 10 of RHOBH in 2020 although no premiere date has been announced.