Nicole James’ time on the Real Housewives of Orange County may have been short-lived but she definitely left a lasting impression.
Returning OC Housewife Heather Dubrow bought Nicole on the show when she returned for season 16. Nicole was initially supposed to be a full-time Housewife but she was later demoted to a friend of the Housewives. However, Nicole’s time on the show was over in the blink of an eye with her last appearance being on the January 19 episode.
It’s unclear why Nicole abruptly stopped filming RHOC but many believe it has something to do with the revelation that she previously sued Dr. Terry Dubrow over a botched boob job.
Filming for season 16 wrapped in October however Nicole stopped filming weeks before. It may be that Nicole stopped filming on her own accord or she may have been forcibly demoted. Perhaps fans will get the answers they are looking for at the season 16 reunion.
“Nicole was brought on by Heather but only filmed for a few weeks. A big storyline that will play out (but is also the reason why she’s no longer on the show full time) is that Nicole was unhappy with the breast augmentation Terry performed on her many years ago,” an insider told Radar Online in October 2021.
The source continued: “It started circling around through the group, and Heather found out because Shannon was telling everyone but her. Cue the fight between Heather and Shannon.”
Other reports claim that Nicole had issues with production which is why she stopped filming in the middle of the season.
“Nicole James made her final appearance on RHOC during [the Jan. 19] episode, reportedly due to issues between herself and production,” the @RealHousewivesFranchise account wrote on Instagram.
It’s unclear if Nicole is completely done with RHOC or if she will be at the season 16 reunion.
Meanwhile, more tea about Nicole’s past has come to light. It seems that Nicole’s past friendship with Shannon isn’t the only link she has to RHOC.
Nicole previously was engaged to Jim Bellino, the ex-husband of former RHOC star Alexis Bellino, who starred on the show from seasons 5 thru 8.
In July 2018, Radar Online shared photos of Jim with a mystery blonde in Las Vegas amid his divorce from Alexis. Turns out that blonde was none other than Nicole.
The two eventually became engaged before ultimately splitting. A reader sent AllAboutTRH a photo of Jim and Nicole celebrating their engagement in front of a Christmas tree. As for Nicole’s engagement ring, it was an extremely large yellow pear-shaped diamond with a halo setting.
The Real Housewives of Orange County airs on Wednesdays at 9 pm EST on Bravo.