Garcelle Beauvais Says She 'Felt Pressure' as First Black RHOBH Star
"I really didn't want to be labeled an angry black woman," Garcelle Beauvais said
The actress — who joined season 10 and is the first Black woman to hold a diamond since the franchise debuted in 2010 — explained during a recent episode of the Reality Life with Kate Casey podcast that she felt "pressure" taking on the role.
"Did I feel pressure of being the first Black woman on [RHOBH]? Yes, I definitely felt pressure that people wanted me to come in and do a certain thing or have a chip on my shoulder," said Beauvais, 53.
"I really didn't want to be labeled an angry black woman," Beauvais said of the stereotype. "That's not who I am."
"I just wanted to stay true to who I am, and I think that's what people have been able to see so far," Beauvais shared.
She also addressed how she's handling responses from social media users as the show airs.
"I was not prepared for how social media takes over," Beauvais said. "Lisa Rinna told me that it is one thing to shoot the show. It's another to see it and what the others have said about you. Then the whole world weighs in. There are so many layers to be on the show."
In January, Beauvais told PEOPLE joining the show was her "midlife crisis."
“I feel like, ‘Why not?’ I wanted to do something outside of the box — it is sort of like my midlife crisis,” she said with a laugh. “Instead of buying a Corvette or doing something crazy, I joined the Housewives.”
Early on, Beauvais said she learned some valuable lessons from the cast, including that she “can’t let [her] guard down.”
“Because one minute they are laughing with you, and the next minute they are throwing you under the bus,” she said. “I’m like, ‘We were just cracking up!' ”
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“It is really interesting for me, because as an actor you are a character, so it’s really weird to show up and just be me,” she added. “So I’m just going along for the ride and seeing how it goes.”
At this time, RHOBH is on hiatus and will return on July 8.
And as fans have seen, this season has certainly been a tense one.
The most recent episode ended with Denise Richards and husband Aaron Phypers storming out of Kyle Richards' outdoor family barbecue. The reason for the couple's abrupt exit? The threesome discussion, which stems from Denise's pizza party earlier in the season, was brought up (again) and Denise was accused of "mom-shaming."
Although reports have claimed that Denise left the show in a huff after being interrogated by her costars, Denise clarified that she didn't "stop filming." (An insider also previously told PEOPLE she “absolutely didn’t quit” the reality series.)
"We wrapped in December. I missed two parties ... towards the end, so I didn't stop filming and I actually think I filmed something on FaceTime for one of the parties. The other party I did not go to, so I didn't stop filming. We wrapped for the season and then we do all our confessionals and everything," the mom of Sam, 16, Lola, 15, and Eloise, 9, said on The Jess Cagle Show.
As to why the show is on a short "hiatus," Denise said she thinks it's due to the coronavirus pandemic, which delayed filming confessionals.
"I think that we're on hiatus because we got so far behind with the confessionals with the COVID. We just recently started doing them where we're filming ourselves basically. We have someone come in and set everything up with a mask ... so we got behind for that. So I think that's part of the reason why we have to go on hiatus," she said. "We gotta catch up with the episodes."
She also confirmed that fans will get the full story as the rest of the season unfolds.
"If it airs the way it was shot, then people will see what happened," she said.
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills airs Wednesdays (9 p.m. ET) on Bravo.