Kelly Dodd continues to raise questions about her status with Bravo. The Real Housewives of Orange County star reignited speculation that she wouldn’t be back for season 16 days after she shut down reports that she was fired.
The 45-year-old reality TV personality raised eyebrows over the weekend after she updated her Instagram bio to read: “Proud veteran castmember of #RHOC.” The change came hours after she was fired by the Positive Beverage company for seemingly mocking restrictions imposed by a California restaurant to stop the spread of COVID-19.
“Today was a rough day: our stakeholder, Kelly Dodd, was distanced from our company as an ambassador of the brand after the recent weeks and days of social media presence, indicating her opinions about people and the pandemic,” Positive Beverage’s founder and CEO Zach Muchnick said in a statement to Us Weekly on Sunday, January 31. “Unfortunately, these values weren’t aligned with our tone and priorities of inclusion, diversity, wellness and health within every pillar of daily life. While she remains a minority shareholder in the company, we made the decision today to formally sever ties with her endorsement and likeness with our brand, so that we can continue our charge to spread good vibes and healthy hydration to everyone!”
Dodd, for her part, reacted to the news via Twitter.
“I’m glad I could help put Positive Beverage on the map and wish them well,” she tweeted. “I’m also really excited about my next venture in the beauty industry, which is my real passion. Stay tuned!”
In a video shared by Dodd on Saturday, January 30, via Instagram Stories, she was accused of joking about being a “superspreader” while dining out with friends. She later addressed the controversy in another video.
“I’m not a superspreader because there’s nothing to spread,” Dodd said. “We all got the vaccine and we don’t have it, so there’s nothing to spread about superspreaders. … The sheeple are mad.”
She also responded via a tweet to TMZ: “Hey @tmz my goal [Saturday] was to promote the reopening of a local biz closed since March. The crowd was celebrating finally enjoying food & drink in a bar & I don’t know the person who yelled ‘superspreader.’ There was never an intent to harm, only to appreciate a slice of normal.”
Saturday wasn’t the first time Dodd has come under fire for minimizing the COVID-19 crisis. She previously apologized for calling coronavirus “God’s way of thinning the herd,” among other controversial remarks.
Andy Cohen, for his part, has grilled Dodd about her behavior on Watch What Happens Live and at the season 15 RHOC reunion. Among speculation that Dodd won’t be asked back for season 16 due to her comments, she blamed former costar Vicki Gunvalson for starting rumors about her.
“No I am not fired !!! Contacts [sic] haven’t come out yet ! Vicki stop being a hater,” she wrote on Friday, January 29, via Instagram.
Two days earlier, Dodd threatened to quit if Braunwyn Windham-Burke returned for the upcoming season.
“I know I cannot film with Braunwyn,” she told her Instagram followers on Wednesday, January 27. “I know for a fact that I cannot film with her. There’s just no way, and if she comes back then I’m out because I know for a fact that I cannot. She’s dangerous and calling people racists and homophobic.”
Cohen, meanwhile, tweeted that the OG franchise was in need of a “reboot” last month after fans called to cancel the show.
Season 15 of RHOC, which finished airing on Thursday, January 28, also starred Gina Kirschenheiter, Emily Simpson, Shannon Beador and Elizabeth Lyn Vargas.
Listen to Ramona Singer tell Us Weekly editors what it was like filming season 13 of ROHNY during COVID-19.