Bethenny Frankel Reveals the Late Bobby Zarin Suggested Her for ‘The Real Housewives of New York City’ 

Jill Zarin’s husband Bobby helped take Bethenny Frankel from struggling actress and relatively unknown natural food chef to star of Bravo’s The Real Housewives of New York City in 2008. 

“The first housewives producer who found me in the Hamptons just emailed me to tell me that it was Bobby who suggested me to her for RHONY,” Frankel tweeted to her more than one million followers on Sunday, January 14. 

Bethenny Frankel Bobby Zarin Career Break
Ramona Singer, Jill Zarin, Bobby Zarin and Bethenny Frankel at the Bowery Hotel on May 13, 2008 in New York City. Larry Busacca/

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Though Frankel, 47, was hesitant to participate in reality TV when Bravo executives approached her in 2007, it was the show that provided the platform to launch her $120 million Skinnygirl empire. Frankel left the franchise after three seasons in 2010 but returned in 2014 for season 7. 

Bobby Zarin Jill Zarin
Bobby Zarin and Jill Zarin ride the world’s tallest observation wheel, The High Roller at The LINQ on July 19, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Bryan Steffy/

As previously reported, Bobby, the owner of Zarin Fabrics, died at the age of 71 on Saturday, January 12, following a long battle with cancer. 

“‘Here’s to those who wish us well. And the rest can go to hell.’ One of Bobby Zarin’s favorites,” Frankel tweeted following the news. “Another one: ‘It’s all good,’ and Bobby, now it really is . . .#RIP.” 

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Frankel also paid tribute to Bobby on her Instagram story, captioning a photo of fireworks, “Dedicating the grand finale to the loving, fun & colorful Bobby Zarin.”

Frankel and Jill were the best of friends until season 3 of RHONY. In 2015, Jill revealed she wanted to make peace with her former confidante. “I miss her, and I want to make amends with her,” Zarin revealed on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen. “I would like to make up with her.”

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