I had the wonderful opportunity to speak to former DC housewife Cat Ommanney. What I thought would be a short, 15 minute interview, turned out to be 90 minutes of chatting, laughing and getting to know someone who seemed like an old friend of mine, that I was re-acquainting myself with.
What are you doing right now?
I left DC in September 2011. I’m in the UK now, but I’m based in Spain, as I love it there. I’m almost finished with my second book, the sequel to Inbox Full and in talks for doing the screen writing for it, which is my dream if Inbox Full becomes a movie! Plus I’ve been in meetings for the past few weeks with NBC Universal, which I can’t wait to share when the time is right!
My girls are in boarding school in the UK, they wanted to go as both their father and I had that schooling, and they love it there and are doing very well at their studies. I see them very often, and all the holidays and of course I wish they could be under my roof until they were 25 [she laughs]. Ruby once asked me if she could live with me forever – so cute! They have been schooled in America, Spain and the UK, they are enjoying a great education system and are pretty well traveled for 12 and 14 year olds!
So let me ask you about Charles, your ex-husband, he blames the show as one of the reasons for the marital breakdown. I’ve been reading many conflicting stories about him.
His boss actually referred me and suggested I do the show. He was no longer covering the White House at the time. I agreed to do the show to help promote my book. It’s easy to blame others for ones own mistakes.
I see that Inbox Full has 4½ stars on Amazon, that’s very good. (Lisa Vanderpump has 4½ stars, Kyle Richards has 2½ stars and Taylor Armstrong has 2 stars).
I’m blown away by the ratings. I got the book deal with Harper-Collins before I signed up for the show. The sequel, which I’m working on right now is almost finished, I don’t have a title as yet. – Inbox Full II the title is still being worked on.
Harper-Collins pulled out of publishing her book because of the Salahi’s and the fact that the show was going to be cancelled at one point after the gatecrashing. Cat subsequently self-published with great reviews.
What was the best part of doing the show for you?
Without question, all the people I have met around the world. So many great characters and I having even more friendships from all walks of life than I had before. I really dislike the word ‘fan’ and prefer ‘friends’ as I see them as friends, but all these people have meant so much to me since the show – the Facebook and Twitter world has introduced me to many, many great people that I value, that I have gotten to know over the last two years. Above all, the humor we have on my Facebook wall or on Twitter makes me laugh my ass off daily!
So what do you think about your former cast mates and how they were on the show?
I love Lynda, she and I will always be close, wherever we are in this world. I wish she had been in more scenes on the show!
Stacie and I didn’t really get on apparently, but I didn’t know this until saw the show [laughs]. I believe I was very supportive of Stacie. Stacie never backed me up or supported me, but that’s OK.
I love Mary, and we became very close and still are. I wish she stood up for her opinion more in the show but then she isn’t a confrontational person, especially dealing with jerks like Tareq Salahi.
Michaele, I don’t know where to start with her, it would have been a better show, but after what she did, it blew the show moving forward. Nightmare woman. On a press junket Michaele was tearful for some reason and I was the only one who gave her a hug, to try and comfort her. Me! Two minutes later in front of the press, she was right as rain and slating Lynda. At that point I was like f*** you I am done with you, the end.
I believe that Michaele was not all that innocent in that marriage as she pretends to be and was in control of everything including Tareq
I agree! Tareq is a jerk. Michael and Tareq are equally as bad as each other.
So how was it working on the Real Housewives of DC?
We were supposed to be taping for 3 months, we ended up filming for 5 months, but it was a great experience over all.
Bravo is notorious for their ‘editing’.
The show has to make to make someone look like a villain. That was my role for the first 4 episodes. At times, the editing made it look like everyone was glaring at me, when in fact that was not the case and we all laughed about it when we saw how it looked! Towards the end of filming everyone went on strike and didn’t want to film with the Salahi’s, as we felt that Michaele hijacked the show because of the white-house fiasco, there were a lot of really good scenes that were cut out because of the Salahi’s crashing the white house. But there had to be an ending. I attended many functions that I would not normally attend for the show, I mean in order to have a show there has to be something to film. The final scene at Stacie’s house was filmed at 2am! I actually, preferred to be working with the crew than in front of the camera most of the time. The crew were great and we nearly always found humor even in the worse moments, of which there were many! I’m still in contact with many of them and the producers.
Wow 2am, that’s crazy. I heard that the DC reunion was the longest taping ever at over 11 hours
It was a very long and grueling day. Security kept us apart, so that was all very pretty heavy stuff on top of everything else. When I got up at one point during the reunion when Michaele was banging on and on and on, and it looked like I was just being dramatic, it was I actually because I seriously couldn’t feel my ass any longer having been sitting on the sofa for hours!
The DC housewives weren’t violent so I think that was a little overboard, the ladies were kept apart?
Yes. Well at that point Tareq had recently thrown wine in Lynda’s face, Michele was saying Whoopi Goldberg had hit her, it was all going nuts so it was actually for our own protection and the staff at Bravo too.
For the reunion I was up at 6am and on set at 8am until 9 or 10 at night. I was so emotionally drained at the end of the reunion taping that I had a really good cry! Having spent all those hours with the whack jobs, it was like hanging out in an insane asylum. I don’t really watch much TV and I underestimated the viewers, smart people watch the show and formulate smart opinions.
I must mention, I had my brother watch the reunion, who doesn’t watch anything housewife related and he almost fell off his chair when you introduced us to NFI
[laughs] Yes NFI! Yes and then there’s NEFC Not even F’ing considered, which I almost prefer in certain peoples cases! lol
What are your thoughts on the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills?
I loved the first season, I watch the show to be entertained. This season I didn’t feel so entertained. It made me depressed, drained and unhappy, the only highlights for me, was Lisa and the wedding.
Taylor, without a shadow of a doubt is the most irritating housewife of all time to me, even over Lulu (Luann de Lesseps), she surely wins the phony pony award. I seriously would rather peel potatoes or load the dishwasher than watch her. I can’t do phony.
In the first season I tweeted about Kennedy’s birthday party costing $60,000, even if I had millions of dollars I would never have thrown a party that expensive for my children. It’s OK for your children to have luxuries but I want mine to understand and appreciate everything they have. To relate other cultures, races and experiences not live in some bubble of allusions and grandeur. I am sure Taylor’s daughter would have rather been playing in a sand pit, than all that self indulgence and unnecessary extravagance.
On the $60,000 birthday party that Taylor threw for her 5 year old daughter.
That episode made me really sickened, Kennedy looked so unhappy. It upset me as a mother seeing a child so obviously traumatized. I shouldn’t have done, but I tweeted: If I were Taylor I would put that money into future therapy for her daughter rather than putting it into a party, that party wasn’t for Kennedy but for Taylor. Later Taylor approached Lynda Erkelitian from DC housewives when they met and said “Your friend Cat is such a b*tch, after what she wrote on twitter, how dare she?“.
The response to the cost of the party, was negative for the most part
Taylor’s responsibility should be first and foremost her daughter. If my ex-husband, the father of my children died, I would be mortified. I’m with Brandi, it was a hot minute since she wrote the book. After her behavior, where she is screaming, and so off the rails, I wouldn’t be surprised if she slapped her husband at some point too. She has pretty much killed this season of Beverly Hills for me. There is something about her that I don’t trust or believe. Yes, there might have been abuse going on, but I can’t see how she can’t sit there like an innocent angel and playing the victim card and out on the razz around town too? The therapist sessions didn’t seem real. She seemed like she was advertising for him. What kind of therapist is so biased towards Taylor, wasn’t he both the Armstrong’s therapists? Aren’t they dating now too? It’s all weird to me..
I have said that and completely agree Russell was obviously seriously distressed, he was made out to be a wife beater on national TV, I’m not saying I don’t sympathize, but I think you owe it to your daughter to leave a dangerous situation and teach your daughter surely? I was devastated by my divorce and Taylor is on the air laughing, not long after her husbands suicide. Guess it takes all sorts..
I quite liked Kyle the first season, but then watching how she behaved towards her sister, especially having an addiction problem, I was completely turned off by her. Plus I’d seen enough of the Charlies Angels hair style in season one. I think she’s a control freak, a bully and an attention seeker. Her tears were too much and ‘all about Kyle’ zzzzzz. She is also a professional actress, let’s not forget. Still find it hard to believe that a sister could allow her other sister to go on a huge TV show knowing full well that she is off her head and suggest a second season, thinking it would be good for her? Whose on what drugs here?
I quite liked Kim first season, and felt sorry for her. The world could see she had more than one serious problem, so should have bowed out then, but no, she goes for season two where she is even more derailed and humiliating herself publicly, daily.
Watching her and her sister, ganging up on Brandi at the party, that was disgusting. Obviously Brandi is far beautiful, younger, sexier and funny. It was nasty and was worse than a train crash. She was so *out to lunch* [high] big time at game night. How can you be filming a nationally televised show while going to the bathroom every 5 minutes? What’s her boyfriends name? And how the hell did Kyle not get her out of there, the second she saw her sister was mashed up.
Who else… Adrienne? I liked her season one and now not so much. That whole scene about being offended by Lisa calling her dog names and all that bachelorette party sulking was pretty, petty.
Dana? Dana Who? Well she was just a non-starter for me. Nothing interesting or entertaining there. No other comment.
Ken the Bulldog Mastiff His nose was dripping like a wet dog in the first scene – screaming potentially Pablo Escobar’s acquaintance. A lot of the housewives sit around, not wanting to confront anyone as they want to be popular, I don’t get that. I love Camille this season, I didn’t warm to her in the first season. Divorce really worked out for her! Plus she looks fantastic.
Kim was never asked if Ken was also on drugs too, that seemed like a no brainer.
Do you watch any other housewife series?
Not really. Just New York and Beverly Hills. I have seen Atlanta a few times and Orange County a couple of times, but not enough to make any informed opinions. I love Lea [Real Housewives of Miami] so I’m excited to see a new season. I like Sonja [Morgan], she seemed nice when it was rumored that I was joining the New York cast, I sent her a copy of my book and she didn’t even acknowledge she received it, so maybe not so much of a fan now lol.
The Countess wouldn’t be pleased.
Ugh, please don’t mention her! Not even an email or a tweet! Boo Hoo! Ramona was quite cold when I first met her, she then realized, I wasn’t going to be a threat to her, then we got along really well and had a great night together on Watch what happens live – lots of laughter!
So what’s in the future for you Cat?
There was talk of me joining the Miami or the New York cast of the housewives series but I need to be based out of Europe for my girls. I am in talks with NBC universal about two very exciting shows, which suit me down to the ground, which will be aired in US too! There are several doors open and it’s a question of making the right choices now.
I spoke to the producer that was casting for a different city in the UK and she asked me if I knew anyone or if I was interested in being cast. I’m not rich; I don’t think I would make for good TV lol.
Have you been asked to be involved in the Real Housewives of London? Why not?? You should have and definitely don’t have to be rich, I’m not! I can say that I’m in talks and I’m excited but can’t say any more right now. There are lots of things to consider and being in the public eye on TV can be pretty hard sometimes – especially when people like to attack people that speak their minds more, I guess. I have a chapter in my new book called ‘Lovers and Haters’, I had some freaks after me that scared me so badly, so putting yourself out there again takes a lot of consideration on many parts of your life.
I completely understand that, wow; some people just take it too far, love or hate, but don’t take it to that level.
You’re an interiors designer, why didn’t Bravo give you a show or at least have you join the other Brits for that design show based in California?
I know! Well I hate keeping secrets but there is lots being worked on and it’s all-good! This is going to be a good year!!
So until the next time. Cat seemed to have faced a few hurdles, but has come out on top, is healthy and happy. It was great talking to her and I look forward to the next time we speak. I will definitely writing about her again for her second book launch.