Former Basketball Wives LA cast-member Tanya Young confirms Basketball Wives is scripted, several days after Tami Roman hints the same on Twitter.
By: A.J. Niles
The Daily Beast published an article written by former Basketball Wives LA cast-member Tanya Young. In the explosive article, Tanya blasts show producers and the production company behind the Basketball Wives franchise, Shed Media.
Tanya Young, ex-wife of former New Jersey Net Jayson Williams, signed on as a cast-member as to “to show interesting aspects of my life and also bring attention to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, for which [she is] a celebrity spokesperson.” However, the show, where she appeared only twice, was nothing as she thought it would be.Young writes,
Within weeks of taping Basketball Wives LA, there was a horrific fight between two cast members while we dined at a swanky Santa Monica restaurant. They argued and eventually fought over who was a “rat” versus a “hoodrat,” who was sleeping with a married man, who was the real bitch, who was fat, and whose teeth were “jacked up.” It was a surreal moment. I was paralyzed by shock and anger. I sat motionless as the women fought over my head and producers worked to break up the melee. However, the cameramen never lost sight of their target: the fight. They captured every moment, from every angle. The footage was the guarantee the producers needed to bait their audience during teasers for the premiere of Basketball Wives LA. As the women pulled out pieces of weave, called each other names, tore each other’s clothing, and struck each other in the face, the producers struck ratings gold—and they knew it.
All of this happened on the show, according to Young because the producers staged everything. She also claims that if black women worked as producers with clout worked on the show, much of the cat fighting would not happen.
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.
Lastly, she claims that the show’s producers would egg on the women and instigate the fights that would explode in front of the cameras.
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.
If anything, Tanya’s article coincides with what Tami ignorantly, or smartly, alluded to on twitter recently. The producers of Shad Media have no shame or cared to show black women in a positive light on TV. However, the show, at it peak, drew in millions of black women to watch. How a person like Shaunie O’Neil can be an “Executive Producer” of this train wreck or how thousands of black women can flock to their televisions week after week to watch it is beyond me.
Hopefully, this sad display of black women will be ending soon.
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