Eboni K. Williams says race is "absolutely discussed" in the upcoming season of The Real Housewives of New York City.
During an interview with SiriusXM's Bevy Smith on Bevelations, Williams, 37, opened up about navigating conversations about race as the show's first Black star.
"Race is absolutely discussed, I think in responsible, but very authentic ways on this season," she said. "It's already happening. I can tell you that much. We're still very much in our filming process. I believe it will continue to happen because it's what you said — it's unavoidable."
"I'm not one to bite my tongue or ignore the big elephant in the room," she added. "When it's brought to me to discuss, you know, as we say in the South, I cut no cards."
"But listen, I'm also not the preachy type. I'm not here to lecture you," she continued. "I have two full-time jobs — one is not to be a professor to white women about Black America, 'cause that doesn't pay. However, what I am is a human, and somebody that thinks that God has blessed me with a particular temperament and skillset to engage in these dialogues, responsibly and authentically.”
The lawyer and TV host went on to explain why she decided to join the cast of the Bravo reality show in the first place.
"People know me as a lawyer. People know me as a journalist. People know me as a broadcaster. People don't know my heart," she said. "People don't know me as a friend. People don't know me as a lover. And I'm excited to share that."
"So I'm open hearted with these ladies, too," she continued. "I'm not going to take no bulls— and I'm not going to play with them. But listen, when they show me they want to grow, I'm open and so excited to support them in their growth."
She also shared that she has developed a close relationship with fellow housewife Leah McSweeney, who joined the cast last season. At 38 and 37, respectively, McSweeney and Williams are the series' youngest cast members, which helped them bond from the get-go. Returning Housewives Luann de Lesseps, Ramona Singer and Sonja Morgan will round out the season 13 group.
"I call Leah Black-adjacent — she's adjacent to the culture," Williams said. "And sometimes with our adjacent friends, they mean well, but they come on a little strong … Leah does not do too much and I so love that about her."
"Leah is exactly who she is, she's unapologetic about who she is. She acknowledges how the culture — our culture — has influenced her career and her aesthetic and her lens and she pays homage," Williams added of her new friend. "She's not trying to be a Black girl and I really, really love that about Leah."
A premiere date for season 13 of RHONY has not yet been announced.
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