Did 'The Real Housewives of New York City' Go on Strike?

Ramona Singer, LuAnn de Lesseps and Sonja Morgan reportedly refused to shoot scenes beyond the agreed-upon production end date

The fifth season of The Real Housewives of New York City hasn't even finished shooting yet, and already the drama is out of control! According to a report in the Huffington Post, cast members LuAnn de Lesseps, Sonja Morgan and Ramona Singer have gone on strike. Their grievance: the new ladies are taking too long to shoot their scenes!

"LuAnn, Sonja and Ramona refused to shoot any scenes at Fashion Week in February, complaining that production was dragging on well past the date that was agreed upon, so they went on strike," an unnamed original cast member dished to the website.

"Ultimately, they did return to tape a final few scenes," says the source. "But it's not fair that they should have to give up their time, with no extra pay, just so the slower new girls can learn how to tape a TV show."

In the past, the ladies have always agreed to continue shooting for a few weeks following the scheduled September-to-February time frame. This year, however, Ramona protested -- and the other women followed suit. But a Bravo insider claims that their strike is going to backfire.

"In the end, the ladies that didn't make themselves available to shoot only hurt themselves, as it means the new girls will get extra airtime," says a source at the network. "What I can guarantee you is that if Ramona thinks she is going to win by messing with the new ladies, she can think again. These girls are killers."

The "new girls" are, reportedly, journalist and Kennedy-by-marriage Carole Radziwill; fashion designer to the stars Heather Thomson; and "Wall Street wife" Aviva Drescher. The three ladies were hired after Bravo shocked audiences by firing longtime cast members Jill Zarin, Alex McCord and Kelly Bensimon, as well as newcomer Cindy Barshop, in September. Some sources say that Bravo was looking for wealthier cast members, in the vein of the California housewives; others said that the bickering between the existing cast member had simply gotten too unpleasant. Whatever the reason, it sounds like the new Housewives are shaking things up in the Big Apple -- which was certainly the desired effect!

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