Perhaps unsurprisingly for one of reality TV’s most divisive stars, insiders are even arguing about how Denise Richards exited “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.”
Bravo insiders told Page Six that Richards demanded too much money to re-up her contract — while sources close to Richards insist that she was so over the show that she told the network she was hitting the road without even giving them the chance to negotiate.
A source tells us that the truth is that the actress asked for an “excessive” amount of money to return to the show for a third season — and the network wouldn’t cough up the cash.
An insider told us, “People think that she didn’t want to come back and that it’s because she got ‘mean-girled’ [by other cast members]. The truth is she did want to come back. But [Bravo] didn’t want to pay her what she asked for. It was way out of her pay grade.”
Sources in Richards’ camp say that she loved her first season on the show, but had a “rough” second season battling with seemingly all of her co-stars, plus former “Housewife” Brandi Glanville.
“Bravo called her last week to ask her if she wanted to return, and she took a couple of days to think about it,” they said, adding that by Wednesday her agent had let Bravo know she had decided to call it quits — and that was the end of the story.
Meanwhile, the first source called that version of events nonsense and said, “She would happily have come back, but for a huge price.”
They added that Bravo executives “negotiated a lot” with the “Starship Troopers” actress, but there was a big gulf between what she wanted and what the network was willing to pay.
Reps for Bravo and Richards declined to comment.
She’s the second high-profile co-star to exit in recent weeks, after Dorinda Medley left “The Real Housewives of New York City.”