The televised catfight between Star Jones and NeNe Leakes won't officially begin until the new season of 'Celebrity Apprentice' premieres March 6, but insiders have already told me that it gets so ugly that Star had to hire her own security detail. "NeNe is coming unhinged," a source close to Star tells me, adding that during taping the Atlanta 'Housewife' made La Toya Jackson cry and even got in the face of singing legend Dionne Warwick. But it's her beef with Star that is particularly nasty, my source reveals. "Clearly, she can't get along with women, especially other black women. She is losing it." (If you're taking notes, the women in the cast include Hope Dworaczyk, La Toya, Star, NeNe, Marlee Matlin, Lisa Rinna, Niki Taylor and Dionne.) For her part, NeNe isn't waiting for the show to begin to make known her hatred for Star. During a visit to 'The Wendy Williams Show,' she tried her best to hold her tongue with limited success. "I'm not feeling Star Jones, I'm sorry. I gave her a chance when I first got there, I did," she told Wendy, later adding, "I wouldn't spit on Star if she was on fire." Of course, the feeling is mutual, but a friend of Star's tells me the former 'View' co-host will rise above the negative. That said, she feels that NeNe could be a physical threat to her, so she has hired her own private security guards. "Star is a real celebrity, not some cheap reality star who is enjoying 15 minute of fame," the friend says. "She's a lawyer and a lady. NeNe can say what she wants about Star, but she doesn't care now that she knows she's safe." All this upcoming drama isn't lost on NBC or 'Apprentice' honcho Donald Trump, who couldn't be more excited. "This is the most dramatic season of 'The Apprentice' ever. It might just be the best TV catfight of all time," a show source tells me. "Donald Trump loved it. He's no fool. He knows that this sort of drama is TV gold." I can't wait!Although Linnethia will hear "You're Fired" fairly quickly in the season (Star probably had something to do with the firing that's why NeNe is so mad at her) we still can't wait for the manufactured drama she ratchets up! BAM!!! BLOOP-BLOOP-BLOOP-BLOOP!!! PLONK!
Here's Linnethia's chat with Wendy.
And a preview of the drama!
Miss Leakes continues to throw grease at Star, telling the Rickey Smiley morning show Star, who used to be as big as an orca, has a "fat brain." [skip to the 1:20 mark]
In Other News: Ordinarily we don't cover such trash like famewhore Heidi Montag, but we had to today. She's apparently spreading rumors that she and her "hus-bland" are in talks to join the cast of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, but on last night's episode of Watch What Happens Live, host and Executive Vice President of Original Programming and Development at Bravo Andy Cohen put that rumor to bed by saying: “Professionally, I’m not supposed to discuss any negotiations so I have to parse my words here. That trash is delusional and I would sooner stab my knives into my eyes than see her on this network. But good news! Heidi, you’re on my show tonight because you’re the ‘Jackhole of the Week!’” Ouch!
Update to original story: Star responds to Linnethia in an interview with Black Voices.
You are featured on the new season of 'Celebrity Apprentice' and the charity that you compete for is the American Heart Association. The show is getting a ton of pre-press mainly because Nene Leakes has been doing interviews about you. What went wrong with you and NeNe?
This actually saddens me. Black women trashing other black women all for the sake of personal aggrandizement. When the cast was first announced, I was both excited and concerned. Excited that this was going to be the most diverse cast in prime-time reality programming and concerned because the media immediately started the drumroll of "can this many black women get along?" The four of us actually chatted about the unique opportunity we had to influence the perception of black women and the way we interact. We each brought something different to the show, so I had hoped we could avoid falling into the typical "snake charmer in your face loud bombastic black woman" stereotypical box that was expected. Some of us were more successful at our quest than others. I knew I wanted to approach the game intelligently, professionally and strategically, while keeping in mind my true purpose for being there – winning money for my charity.
You have a lot of black female friends – Vanessa Bell Calloway, Natalie Cole and Holly Robinson Peete to name a few. Were you surprised at Nene's personal attack on you and the implications that you don't gel with other black women?
Who are you telling! You know my girlfriend gatherings are legendary! But you'll see this season on the show, at some point Nene attacked all the black women on the show and scared the other women to death with her aggressive approach. But to be fair, it is an approach that works for her kind of television interaction, as evidenced by the great ratings they generate. But it isn't an approach that works in the professional environment and it isn't an approach that most sisters use in interacting with each other. I would hope, as she becomes more exposed to a variety of professional situations, she will tone down the vitriolic emotional reactions and learn to express herself in manner that is more reflective of the majority of black women in America.
Update, March 24: Here's something ridiculous for ya! Star magazine is reporting that Linnethia is going after Star "I'm a Lawyer" Jone's ex-husband, whom she reportedly is planning to remarry.
But the Atlanta Housewife sure has a fondness for Star's ex-husband, Al Reynolds. The two dined at STK in NYC on earlier this month and “looked very cozy,” an eyewitness tells Star. Afterward, they danced the night away at Haven before hopping in the same cab at 4 a.m. And date No. 2 is already in the works! NeNe and Al have been flirting on Twitter, with Al trying to persuade her to come visit him in Miami. On March 15, he tweeted a pic of himself with his arm around NeNe's waist on their date. Perhaps Star should step out with NeNe's estranged husband, Gregg, to settle the score!