‘Southern Charm’: Leva Explains How She Made Peace with Kathryn – But Still Got Stuck in the Middle [Exclusive]

Southern Charm Season 8 started with a bang when Naomie Olindo and Kathryn Dennis clashed during the season opener. Dennis threw herself a lavish 30th birthday party and invited Olindo, but there was still bad blood because Olindo was steamed Dennis shared a rumor about Cameran Eubanks last season.

While on camera, Dennis told Craig Conover that Eubanks’ husband had cheated on her. Conover quickly shut down the rumor, and Eubanks said it was untrue. And even though Olindo was not on the show last season, she was furious Dennis shared the rumor and made sure Dennis knew. Dennis and Olindo have a tense moment toward the end of the party, and Leva Bonaparte tries to play peacemaker … a role she ended up with quite a bit this season, she told Showbiz Cheat Sheet.

Leva said she was totally stuck in the middle between Kathryn and Naomie on ‘Southern Charm’

“So it ended up being that it exactly – [in the middle],” she said about trying to keep the peace at the Southern Charm party. “Naomie has far more history with Kathryn than I do. Naomie is also a fiercely protective friend. So I think she was coming in from a space of being protective over Cam, protective over me, protective over what’s right, you know?”

'Southern Charm' Season 8 cast members Chleb Ravenell, Austen Kroll, Olivia Flowers, Leva Bonaparte, Craig Conover, Shep Rose, Kathryn Calhoun Dennis, Naomi Olindo, Venita Aspen, and Taylor Ann Green pose in formal attire.
Chleb Ravenell, Austen Kroll, Olivia Flowers, Leva Bonaparte, Craig Conover, Shep Rose, Kathryn Calhoun Dennis, Naomi Olindo, Venita Aspen, Taylor Ann Green |Stephanie Diani/Bravo

“And I had already gone on that journey with Kathryn, so I was like, I’ve already done this, so I don’t want to do it again,” Bonaparte added about her confrontations with Dennis during the last season of Southern Charm. “But I do also think that you guys don’t have to be best friends, you know? And I think that’s the place that I was trying to push Naomie to. Like, you don’t have to be that invested. If she makes different decisions than you do or I do, then that’s OK. We’re not all besties, but we are friends and in the same friend group. It’s always like that. There’s like a few that are closer and then the few that are not, but you still enjoy them socially.”

How did Kathryn and Leva squash their beef?

Southern Charm‘s Leva Bonaparte was the cast member at odds with Dennis last season of Southern Charm because she called her out for sharing the rumor. She also questioned Dennis when she was accused of making a racist remark on social media. “And so what you guys didn’t see on the show was that obviously, we made some amends at the reunion,” Bonaparte said. “We had some real genuine, ‘I’m sorries.’ You know, I always stand in ‘I said what I said,’ but I don’t always think my delivery was the best with her. And I think I didn’t know her character well enough.”

“So I could only see things from what I knew of her character, which to me, I was like, you’re not answering, then you don’t care,” she reflected. “And come to find out, she struggles with a lot of anxiety. The way she navigates that anxiety is very different than the way I do. So, a lot of personality things muddled it up, right? So we said some apologies, and then we went to dinner.”

Leva did not want Kathryn Dennis to be canceled

Bonaparte said she and Dennis moved forward after last season’s fallout on Southern Charm. “We went to dinner together after the reunion because we genuinely wanted to show people that friends can move on from this kind of thing, which is essentially why I addressed it in the first place. I didn’t want a cancelation,” she insisted. “And I wanted to just be like, I’m not OK with this. I need you to take accountability, and let’s find a way to move through it. I’m still next to you. I’m not OK with the comments, but I’m still next to you. And so that’s sort of like how we wanted to navigate it.”

“So we went to dinner. We made a vow that we understood each other more,” she shared. “I understood her perspective, and we put it to rest at that point.

“And I tried to be the best I could with her. Obviously, we’re not close friends, but I want it to just be a fair friend. A fair, decent person to her. And so we sort of made a pact that we would do right by each other.”

But Leva had to play peacemaker for everyone on ‘Southern Charm’ … and she was over it

But Bonaparte said she constantly had to be the bigger person this season of Southern Charm and tried to play mediator. “Yeah, 100%. Especially this year,” she said. “I just found myself constantly in this role. And it might be just because I can’t turn off micromanaging [laughs]. I work my household, and I had a lot of stuff going on. I was very stressed out this year, incredibly stressed out.”

“We went from doing nothing to doing everything,” she recalled. “A lot of stuff that I was internally struggling with, just like the bounce back. I hate to say this, but it’s like we didn’t even lube up for this. It’s just like we’re back in business. It’s insane [laughs]. We’re hiring. Places are packed. I have a child, you know?

“So I was struggling with a lot on the inside that I just didn’t have the bandwidth for the fighting,” she said. “Just stop the fighting. The fighting just doesn’t matter. None of this matters. And, I was still very affected by covid, I think. So I was just like, none of this is big enough to really just fight this deeply about. So it was a little bit of that, too. But I’m bossy, too. I’m a bossy girl. There’s worse things to be, but I am.”

See more of Leva on Southern Charm when it airs Thursday at  9 p.m. ET on Bravo. 

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