Do Producers Intentionally Lie To ‘BBW’ Cast Members To Create Drama? Tanya Says Yes!

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Opposition to the “Basketball Wives” franchise was already rooted in the thinking that the show’s producers enjoyed depicting black women as angry, violent fools and that the women they got to join the show were all too eager to play into that stereotype. But former LA cast member Tanya Williams is taking that charge a step further, saying maybe if there were black people associated with the production of the show instead of a crew of white men planting lies in the cast member’s heads things would be different. And though that sounds like she might be coming to the defense of characters like Tami Roman or Evelyn Lozada, she says the ultimate blame for what we see on TV still lies with them.

“I oftentimes think that if VH1 and the production company that produces BW would hire at least one African-American woman producer, with a legitimate say in the creative and editing process, there would be a heightened level of awareness and sensitivity to the images of black women they are broadcasting,” she wrote in a piece for the Daily Beast. “Nevertheless, the producers, the director, the cameramen (yes, they too are all men), and the tech personnel can’t force any cast member to throw a punch, toss a glass of water, or curse someone out. The women must take responsibility for their actions and the resulting consequences.”

After talking about the positive scenes she filmed for the show and how the producers weren’t going for it—as evidenced by the fact that she only appeared in maybe the first one or two episodes of the show—Tanya talked about the fabricated drama that the series’ creators dredge up.

“I certainly don’t miss the environment I was exposed to while taping Basketball Wives. It was both toxic and controlling. Women were not allowed to communicate after shooting a scene; women were chastised as if they were children; high-ranking executives would childishly ignore cast members on the set; and producers would “ice” cast members from working when they wanted to garner more outrageous conduct from them. Despite the “friendships” portrayed on the screen, some producers purposely planted seeds of discord between the women, and told outright lies, hoping that conflict and drama would ensue. Oftentimes, when I arrived at home, I immediately took a shower because I felt psychologically and emotionally dirty and disgusting from my day on the set.”

What’s interesting is that in the comments to the piece someone claims to be one of the producers of the show and says only 2% of what Tanya wrote is true and that she was let go because readers found her “highly unlikeable.” The person also points out that the main Executive Producer of the show and also Shaunie O’Neal are female African Americans, as well as the main camera man and several other members of the crew but there’s no telling how legit that is. You’d think if you were a producer the point about creating fake drama between cast members would be the main thing you’d want to dispute, and probably in an official press release not in a blog comment, but you never know.

Either way, the fact that Shaunie is one of the producers of the show puts a major flaw in Tanya’s argument anyhow. If she’s OK with the show, there’s nothing a cameraman or production assistant can do about it.

What do you think? Is there any truth to Tanya’s claims?

via MadameNoire

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