Thursday, October 24, 2013

New 'Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’ Star Carlton Gebbia Talks Joining The Show and Practicing Witchcraft
“Carlton is a badass. She’s hot,” is how Real Housewife of Beverly Hills Brandy Glanville describes her new costar and friend, Carlton Gebbia. Meet the latest woman to join the wild cast of Bravo’s Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, tattooed, actress-turned-interior designer, Carlton Gebbia. Appearing in the season four trailer making out with Glanville, Gebbia has certainly already made her reality TV splash, and seemingly acclimated well with the housewives crowd.

Raised in a myriad of places—she cites England, Guernsey, and South Africa among the few—Gebbia transplanted herself to Beverly Hills nearly twenty years ago. “I’ve been out here a long time” she laughs. Married to David Gebbia, owner of corporate investment firm StockCross Financial Services, with whom she has three children, Gebbia prides herself on her family and, yes, her practice of witchcraft. It’s a first for the housewives: a witch by spiritual means, rather than personality. Gebbia talks to The Daily Beast about her faith, feeding squirrels with Kim Richards, and her love for Real Housewife of Atlanta (and Celebrity Apprentice alum) Nene Leakes.

What has your family thought of you joining the show, putting your lives on tape?

Well, [they’ve been] very supportive actually. My mother-in-law used to watch the show anyway, so she got a giggle out of the idea. My brothers-in-law and my sistesr-in-law have been really supportive, and have actually been a part of it.

Did you watch the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills before you joined?

You know, I didn’t. I never really watched a lot of reality television, but then once I knew this was going to materialize, I did catch up on some episodes, just to kind of get a general idea of what I was walking into. It was ill-prepared [Laughs].

It’s quite an interesting thing to walk into.

Yeah. But I do feel like I walked in with my eyes wide open.

Were you friends with any of the cast members beforehand?

No, I wasn’t. I didn’t really know them. I knew we were in the same circles, but [we] hadn’t really had the opportunity to meet one-on-one.

So during filming, or even after filming, did you become particularly close with anyone? Or did anyone really reach out to you as a new housewife?

Yeah, actually the very first time that—this is when I was at the Chamber of Commerce event at Kyle [Richards’s] house. I got to meet all of the girls and definitely Yolanda [Foster] completely reached out to me. So did Lisa [Vanderpump]. And then, I think Brandi [Glanville] and I had a funny exchange in words. But those three, I would say, were the most accessible initially.

Do you have any funny or standout moments from filming?

[Laughs] Let me think about that one.

Obviously Brandi and I had a moment when we were in the pool, which has been shown in slow motion, might I add.

I had a funny moment actually with Kim [Richards]. We were feeding squirrels in Palm Desert, which was hysterical because the girls were running away from them. It was really a lot of fun. We had a few encounters with some bees and things.

I think you’re definitely going to see both sides of me. You’ll see the side of me that’s really about my faith, which is about nature, and then you’ll see somewhat of a wild side.

Right. I have read a lot about your faith. You practice Wicca, correct?

Yeah. Well, there’s a lot of debate about what I supposedly practice, because Wicca and other religions are covered under the umbrella of Paganism. I’m Celtic, which is my ancestry.  And I practice witchcraft. My grandmother was a Pagan. There are so many branches of Paganism and there are also different ways to practice these faiths. There’s no one defined answer.

Because I’m a sole practitioner, it’s more of what works for me personally and spiritually, and something that has been in my family since the day I was born. It’s not something I fell into, although it’s a fantastic faith. It’s incredibly positive. We believe that the spirit lies in everything around us and I believe that spiritual growth is related to the cycles of the earth. I believe in the moon phases as well.

Are your children being raised to practice this as well?

No.  The one thing that I have decided is because they are young, they believe in the power of prayer—which I believe in as well—, the healing of crystals, and prayer candles. Those are kind of the three things they understand and are comfortable with. If this is something they want to explore further, I’ll teach them.

Again, I’ve said it before, any religion they decide to follow I’ll be supportive of it. I’ve never, until I had to really explain what I believe in—which happened when I was in school—I just don’t define people by their religious beliefs. I don’t stand in judgment of anybody’s religion. It’s now been a repetitive cycle for me.  From school to now, it [has been] judged, unfortunately negatively.  But if people who have a genuine interest do the research, they’ll see that it is very, very positive.

I also read that you’re writing a children’s book.

I am actually. I had wanted to do this a long time ago and wanted to write basically a toddler’s storybook with a tiny bit of Victorian gothic flair. But, then I figured it may be interpreted not as lightly as I intended, so I put a hold on it. [My girls and I] always tell these stories before bed and give [them] a different flair. As my girls have gotten older, I decided I was going to continue with the book—but that I was going to write the short stories with a bit of a gothic, Victorian edge and have my children illustrate, because they’re fantastic little artists. So we’re going to make it a family affair. My husband might draw a stick figure. I’m not sure about that.

Do you have a favorite housewife from any of the other cities?
I hadn’t watched [them] before. I just started, I figured I better. I just started watching older, fairly new episodes—they’re on demand—of Orange County. But NeNe [Leakes], I think she’s a firecracker. I like her a lot. She’s a force to be reckoned with.
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