It takes a lot to scare NeNe Leakes.
The outspoken and seemingly fearless star of The Real Housewives of Atlanta admits her newfound fame has left her a bit on edge.
“I do like people coming up to me, but it’s a little scary,” Leakes tells me. “I didn’t think I was going to be scared...I literally cannot leave the house. Every time I leave the house, I end up on somebody’s website.”
But in the very next breath, however, Leakes relishes the attention. “I am the breakout star,” she boasts. “I love it! I love it! I’m glad everybody could feel and see my genuineness and my realness.”
And nowhere is that genuineness and realness more evident than on tomorrow’s sometimes very heated reunion show, during a verbal smackdown with her former best friend, aspiring country singer Kim Zolciak-Biermann.
Read on to learn what Leakes has to say about feuding with Kim, her celebrity fans (Anderson Cooper isn’t the only one) and making babies with her gay best friend.
You and Kim really go at it on the reunion show. Did you expect such a big blowup?
I knew something was going to happen because I went into the reunion show saying, “I’m going to confront Kim on everything she said during the show. And if we have to get into an argument then we’re going to get into it.”
In one episode, Kim called you a “low-budget bitch”!
This is what I have to say about that: I’m not a low-budget bitch, but I am a bitch on a budget. [Laughs.] We are in a recession, and I am on a budget, baby!”
Is Dwight Eubanks [Leakes’ hairstylist gay best friend] going to get his own reality show?
I heard he was testing for a reality show, but he didn’t tell me. I’m going to kill him for that...But let me tell you about Dwight. He’s very fine. He knows who he is. I just love him.
Maybe the two of you could be the next Regis and Kelly.
I do everything with Dwight but have sex with him. He wants to have sex, but I’m like, No, no, no! He says, “NeNe, I want to have a baby.” And I said, “Do you really think that I want to have your baby. Are you kidding me?” Not me. I’m not having anybody’s baby. [Laughs.]
Anderson Cooper really can’t stop talking about you. He was talking about you the other night with Jay Leno. Jay even showed a picture of you.
He showed a huge photo of me. I screamed in my bedroom. I was like, Whoa! I really need to get on Leno now!
You told me when we first talked a month ago that you wanted to come out to Hollywood. So when are you coming? I’ll take you around.
I’m ready! I’ve been going to New York, though. Rosie O'Donnell and I did Rachael Ray’s show [last] Tuesday. Rosie said, “NeNe, I love you.” She has my picture on her blog. She kept cracking up and saying, “I love you so much. You are awesome.”