What to Know Amid Scandoval
A different kind of reunion. The Vanderpump Rules cast is preparing to address all their drama — both onscreen and off — after filming season 10.
Before the hit Bravo series returned with new episodes in February 2023, the topic on everyone’s mind was Tom Schwartz and Raquel Leviss‘ relationship. Amid his divorce from Katie Maloney, Us Weekly confirmed in August 2022 that Schwartz and Raquel hooked up at Scheana Shay and Brock Davies‘ nuptials. (The Minnesota native and Katie finalized their divorce two months later.)
However, cast and fans alike were in for a shakeup when news broke in March 2023 that Tom Sandoval and Ariana Madix had split after nearly a decade of dating because he cheated with Raquel.
“The cameras haven’t stopped rolling since Wednesday night. It’s not an understatement to say this will be the most explosive season of Vanderpump Rules ever,” a source exclusively told Us following the TomTom co-owner and Ariana’s breakup.
Bravo later confirmed that Kristen Doute would return to film scenes with Ariana after being fired in 2020 for past racist behavior. The He’s Making You Crazy author was spotted arriving at her former costar’s house in March 2023 as the drama unfolded. (Kristen dated Sandoval from 2007 to 2013 before he moved on with the Florida native.)
In response to the cheating drama, Sandoval issued a public apology to his now-ex-girlfriend after only addressing the backlash his Los Angeles business received when he initially broke his silence.
“I want to first and foremost apologize to everyone I’ve hurt through this process. Most of all, I want to apologize to Ariana,” the Missouri native wrote via Instagram in March 2023. “I made mistakes, I was selfish and made reckless decisions that hurt somebody I love. No one deserves to feel that pain so traumatically and publicly.”
He added: “I can only imagine how devastating this has been for Ariana and everyone around us. I feel really horrible about that. My biggest regret is that I dishonored Ariana. I never meant to disappoint so many people, including our loving families and friends.”
Raquel, for her part, also reflected on the drama in her own statement. “I want to apologize for my actions and my choices foremost to Ariana, and to my friends and the fans so invested in our relationships. There is no excuse, I am not a victim and I must own my actions and I deeply regret hurting Ariana,” she wrote via Instagram.
In her lengthy message, Raquel noted that she was planning to speak to “a counselor” about her issues. “I have sought emotional validation through intimate connections that are not healthy without regard for my own well-being, sometimes negatively affecting others and often prioritizing the intimate connection over my friendships,” she added. “I am taking steps to understand my behavior and make healthier choices.”
Although Ariana didn’t publicly address the controversy right away, Lisa Vanderpump offered an update on how she was doing during an episode of Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen in March 2023.
“I have seen Ariana and I have [filmed] with her. It’s an integral part of the story now. I would say the word I would use [to describe her] is devastated,” the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum said before filming the reunion.
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