Former ‘RHONJ’ producer Carlos King: Danielle Staub made show a ‘hit’

Pay attention, puh-lease — because former “Real Housewives of New Jersey” producer Carlos King says Danielle Staub made the Bravo reality show a “hit” when it premiered in 2009.

“If Danielle Staub was not on Season 1 of ‘The Real Housewives of New Jersey,’ [Teresa Giudice’s] table flip would have never happened,” King exclusively tells Page Six while promoting his new podcast “Reality with the King.”

The producer, 42, notes that the ex-Bravolebrity stood strong among a tight-knit group of women, most of whom were family. Staub originated “New Jersey” alongside sisters Caroline Manzo and Dina Manzo, their sister-in-law Jacqueline Laurita and the ladies’ longtime pal Giudice. 

“[Fans were] seeing this divorcee go through this suburban world in New Jersey where she is the loner amongst a family,” he says. “You had two sisters, a sister-in-law and a family friend. Talk about the odds being against you.”

Carlos King
Former “Real Housewives of New Jersey” producer spoke with Page Six while promoting his new podcast “Reality With the King.”
Page Six

King — who hid underneath the table to hand Staub the infamous “Cop Without a Badge” book that engendered Giudice’s table outburst — adds that the “beauty of Danielle Staub” lies within her independent spirit. 

“She stood on her own,” says the Kingdom Reign Entertainment founder. “Whether or not you disagree with some of her choices, what you must agree on is she is one of the reasons why that show is a hit.”

Staub appeared on Seasons 1 and 2 of “RHONJ” and returned as a “friend of” for Seasons 8 through 10. She has not appeared on the reality series since 2020.

Danielle Staub
King praises Staub as the “architect” of her franchise.
NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

King considers Staub one of his “10 Greatest ‘Housewives’ of All Time,” a list that his social media followers have been begging him to release for years. 

The entire lineup will be revealed on his “Reality with the King” podcast. However he is sharing two more of his picks exclusively with Page Six: Ramona Singer of “New York City” and Gizelle Bryant of “Potomac.”

“At the end of the day, Ramona is fantastic television. She is delusional in a good way. She is a walking … sitcom,” he says of the polarizing “RHONY” OG. “The things she does are so wacky that she’s meant to be on reality television. She is a professional reality star and ‘Ultimate Girls Trip’ solidified that.”

Ramona Singer on "The Real Housewives of New York City"
The Kingdom Reign Entertainment founder calls “RHONY” OG Ramona Singer a “professional reality star.”
NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via

As for Bryant, King dubs her the “unofficial producer” of “RHOP.” 

“She knows how to ignite a conversation and she knows how to make the story track,” he explains. “Gizelle does that better that everybody on that particular franchise. And the reason why she’s on the list is because without her, ‘Potomac’ would not be as great as it is today.”

King — who, in addition to his work on “RHONJ,” helmed “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” for nine seasons — sees Staub, Singer and Bryant as the “architects” of their respective franchises. 

Gizelle Bryant on "The Real Housewives of Potomac"
King says Gizelle Bryant is the “unofficial producer” of “RHOP.”
NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via

“Among 139 ‘Real Housewives,’ these women are legendary,” he says. “But if your ‘Housewife’ did not make it, it does not mean they’re not great. I’m only talking about top 10!”

“Reality with the King” is available to stream via SiriusXM’s Stitcher. New episodes drop Wednesdays and Fridays.