NeNe Leakes Dropped from Xscape Reunion Tour Over Rape Joke
By Elizabeth Stanton
Chelsea Lauren, Getty Images
Though she apologized on Monday, NeNe Leakes is still facing consequences over a rape joke she made about a heckler during her stand-up set last weekend.
The Real Housewives of Atlanta star made headlines when she called out a female heckler while on stage for the "Girls Nite Out for Laughs" stand-up comedy show at the Paramount Theater in Oakland, California. After getting booed by the crowd, Leakes told the woman she hoped her Uber driver would rape her on the way home.
Leakes took to Facebook on Monday to apologize for her choice of words.
"I truly regret and apologize for what I said from the stage in Oakland over the weekend," she wrote. "Sometimes words can cut deep and hurt when you have no intentions of them doing so."
"As a woman and someone who has survived abuse, I regret the words that I used," she continued. "I made a mistake and I should have known better. I hope people accept my deepest and sincerest apologies. I am sorry."
Despite the apology, Leakes was still fired from her hosting duties on the reunion tour of '90s R&B group Xscape, which features her RHOA co-star Kandi Burruss.
In a statement obtained by ET, the group wrote, "Like many, we were dismayed by the recent remarks made by our talented colleague and friend NeNe Leakes. As a result, we have decided to no longer proceed with her participation on our tour. It was an unfortunate incident for which NeNe has since apologized and we wish her the best as she navigates this very difficult period."
"As strong supporters of all women, we know this decision is what is best," the statement continued. "Our hearts go out to all female victims and we stand with you! This tour is for and about our fans and we want to provide an entertaining and enjoyable experience for every single person who attends. As always, we are grateful for the love and support and we look forward to seeing all of you at 'The Great Xscape Tour.'”
This isn't the first time Leakes has faced trouble this week. On Tuesday, ET's Brice Sander sat down with her fellow RHOA star Kim Zolciak, who said she has hired attorney Marty Singer to take Leakes to court over "inappropriate" allegations against her family.
"I don't have anything to say [to Leakes]. I think it's pretty inappropriate," Zolciak shared. "I think the banter back and forth and kind of having fun and there's catty moments, we're all grown women and just kind of living life. But the racism card is not something that I feel like, in this day and age, that you should pull. And I didn't take it lightly. And yes, I have hired Marty Singer."
The legal drama stems from last week, when Leakes called out Zolciak's 20-year-old daughter, Brielle Bierman, for posting a Snapchat video about allegedly finding cockroaches at Leakes' home. In her since-deleted Instagram post, Leakes called Brielle "racist trash," Zolciak a "trashy mom" and hashtagged "#KKK."
"I don't take it lightly and I don't appreciate it, and the hashtag, 'KKK,' is kind of the one that put me over the edge," Zolciak told ET on Tuesday. "And to say my whole family is [racist], there's been threats on Brielle's Instagram, threats on my stuff. We've had to change a lot of things in the last few days because of it. I mean, it just takes one crazy person. This world is a crazy place, and in this situation, I just... I'll never understand it."
While Zolciak prepares for her legal drama with Leakes, she'll eventually have to come face-to-face with the reality star to film the Real Housewives of Atlanta reunion show.
"I don't think she's in the right frame of mind at this stage of the game. But I'm an adult and I can handle myself. I don't have anything to say, and I won't again. There's a line that's definitely been crossed and it just went too far," Zolciak said, adding that Hollywood legal heavyweight Singer "does not play."