"Cast members Caroline [Manzo] and Jacqueline [Laurita] made it clear that if Danielle stayed they would leave," a 'Housewives' insider tells me. "Bravo had already lost Dina [Manzo] because of Danielle and couldn't risk losing another two cast members from the top 'Housewife' show in the whole franchise."
Bravo confirmed Monday that 'Real Housewives of New Jersey's' most controversial cast member, Danielle Staub, will not be returning to the show. However, despite rumors that Danielle quit to focus on her own show, sources tell me she was actually fired.
Any reports that Staub is getting lots of offers for her own show can be ignored. Her contract with Bravo makes it very clear that she cannot appear on her own show with any other network until two years after her deal with Bravo expires. Project Runway Seasons 1-7 DVD Boxset
Bravo executives have said many times that they believe what makes the Jersey show so special is the family dynamic, which gives family members Caroline and Jacqueline far more power than any of the other cast members.
"Bethenny [Frankel] left the New York cast and the ratings stayed the same," a TV executive confirms. "Several cast members have left other 'Housewives' shows and no one cared. The only 'Housewives' that Bravo needs to hang onto are the Manzo family. They are TV gold and Bravo knows it."
"The only network that you will legally be able to see Danielle on for a few years is Bravo," insiders tell me. "Bravo owns these ladies. Look at Orange County housewife Jeanna Keough; she is returning to TV on 'Thintervention' with Jackie Warner, which happens to be a Bravo show."