March 4th, 2010
12:55 PM ET

New season of 'Real Housewives of New York,' new Jill Zarin

Jill Zarin A new season of “The Real Housewives: New York” debuts tonight on Bravo at 11 p.m., and along with the two new housewives – Jennifer Gilbert and Sonja Morgan – is a new and improved Jill Zarin, with a new and unexpected BFF.

For the past two seasons, Jill and Bethenny Frankel were like long-lost sisters, but Zarin told CNN that after season two wrapped, her relationship with Frankel hit a rough patch that still hasn't healed.

“When we stopped filming last year, we still had lives and we were still interacting with each other. When the show picks up in September, you pick up right where we are in our lives,” she said. Zarin didn't elaborate on what exactly caused the riff, but confirmed that “there were definitely some damaged relationships in the year that happened. It’s really sad for me; it’s hard and it’s painful.”

But on the bright side, being on the outs with Frankel has made Zarin draw much closer to former frenemy Kelly Bensimon. After watching the second season, Zarin said she was “horrified” by the way she treated her.

“Kelly and I became closer this season. I opened my heart up to get to know her and for her to know me," Zarin said. "I apologized to her that I didn’t give her a chance to get to know her and I made assumptions about her based on what other people told me, which is everything I don’t believe in, and I got caught up in it.”

The viewers likely got caught up in it too. The way last season was edited, Zarin said, with the show focusing on the drama between Bensimon and Frankel (remember that mind-boggling, "I'm here, and you're here" chat at the bar?), Bensimon was painted in an unfair light.

“Kelly is a lot of fun, and hopefully that comes out more this year. That’s one of the things I like about Kelly – she's all about having fun,” Zarin said. “She’s always got a smile on her face and she’s always happy. She has very good energy, and I need to be around good energy people. When I was having problems at the beginning of the season with Bethenny, Kelly was there for me.”

But when the conversation turned to the two new cast members, Zarin hesitated for a moment.

“You know, it’s uh…let’s see…It’s a lot of women," she said. "It’s a lot of women to get to know, but I didn’t make the same mistake that I made with Kelly, and I tried to get to know them both. It was limited time to meet them, because they came in mid-season. You know, I’m not a mean girl, as much as Ramona likes to say that I am."

New friends aside, Zarin - who's already had a breast reduction - decided to step her style up a notch for season 3.

"I wasn’t thrilled with how I looked last season," she said, "so I had my hair and makeup done nearly every time we shot," something she points out the other women didn't do. "I had a stylist help me get clothes because I wanted to look better. The show is about the glamour - as much as people say they want to see reality, they really don’t. They want to see you look good."

Zarin is still running with Zarin Fabrics with her husband, Bobby, but she's picked up two new ventures in RHONY's off-season. Zarin teamed up with her mother and sister for a new book, "Secrets of a Jewish Mother," which lands on shelves April 15, and will debut a new bedding line with a major retailer in coming months.

Filed under: television

soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. Poor Housewife of NJ

    I've a BFF for past 30yrs and could not conceive of offending or not speaking with her on a one to one basis to clear any misunderstandings or hurts between us. True friendship is a love relationship and to not be able to communicate with your friend well to me, it's not a real friendship.

    August 30, 2010 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Barbara

    I heard Bobby was marrried before. I wonder if Jill was his mistress? That would be interesting wouldn't it?

    June 10, 2010 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Head Diva In Charge

    Say what you will about the show, but the NYC ladies are doing for themselves, and I like that. They all work and run their families. I respect them, and I really like Jill! Kelly....well, not so much, but who knows, I could be changing my tune.

    March 5, 2010 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Bonnie

    kelly is still a nutzo and thinks she is gods gift. She is psycho........ just wait .you have not seen anything yet

    March 5, 2010 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  5. Annie

    Siding with vapid Kelly just to hurt Bethenny is pretty pathetic. I thought Jill was smarter than that. I guess I was wrong. Kinda sad.

    March 4, 2010 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Eddie Velez

    I'm not soo excited about tonights showing.. I hate the NY housewives..

    March 4, 2010 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Sharon

    One of the new girls will probably replace Bethany since she is getting her own reality show

    March 4, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Shelby

    Love to see the RHofNY face off with the RHofNJ – that would be fabulous season.

    March 4, 2010 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Ladynblue

    I'm soo excited about tonights showing.. I love the NY housewives.. especially Ramona she knows how to open mouth insert foot and then look like a deer in headlights like what did i say! Remember that whole conversation she had w/ the duchess about her husband being twice her age.. and when she was called on it was like Oh the hell well.. haaaaaaaa CLASSIC..

    but i dont think anybody is leaving maybe they just adding to give it more spice ya know.. Wonder if they will touch on the duchess break up w/ her husband and her new man..

    March 4, 2010 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Eddie Velez

    I can't wait for the new season!!!

    March 4, 2010 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Str8 outta TX

    rather watch keeping up with the kardashians. B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L! all of them. too bad they're probably stupider than a sack of rocks, and spoiled with bad personality. on second thought... maybe i will check it out.

    March 4, 2010 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
  12. beverly

    anonymous that's a very good question. I haven't heard that anyone was leaving the show. Guess we will find out tonight

    March 4, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
  13. gina

    robert- it's called TV Entertainment. If you don't like it, change the channel. Otherwise, try not being so negative.

    March 4, 2010 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  14. robert

    Why is this news. The economy is in the toilet and we want to watch rich disconnected women spend money and fight over nothing. Isn't the Kardasians already enough.

    March 4, 2010 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
  15. gina

    This show is crazy, and so is Kelly. It makes for great TV though!

    March 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Brian

    LOVE Jill! She already looked fabulous. In fact, I think the NY housewives are the hottest bunch of women on TV since "Charlie's Angels".

    March 4, 2010 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Anonymous

    Who are the two new housewives replacing?

    March 4, 2010 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |

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