Friday, August 12, 2016

Dina Manzo Talks Leaving New Jersey Behind and Starting Fresh in LA
Dina Manzo has a pretty simple reason for not returning to The Real Housewives of New Jersey for season seven: she doesn’t live in New Jersey anymore! 

“You know, I always felt like I was a California girl stuck in New Jersey,” Dina tells ET. “Every time I came here, it felt like home.” 

After wrapping season six in 2014, Dina swapped coasts and settled in Malibu. The move coincided with the former Bravo star finalizing her divorce from husband Tommy Manzo. 

“I'm not gonna lie, it was my divorce,” she confesses. “I wanted to run as far away as possible from what was going on, and my daughter was in college, and I was like, 'OK, I can pick up my animals and go anywhere I want.' And I did.” 

Dina returned to the Bravo series for its sixth season after abruptly exiting the show in season two. The 44-year-old says she left the first time because filming with sister Caroline Manzo and sister-in-law Jacqueline Laurita was “horrific.” 

“I was there to support Teresa [Giudice],” Dina explains of her return. “I'm not gonna lie, the paycheck was good! You know, I was going through a divorce and it was a nice chunk of change to start my new life.” 

“This time, it really wasn't an emotional decision,” she adds. “It was like, it's not gonna work. We talked. Andy [Cohen] and I talked for a minute about me coming back, and how that would be possible.” 

Dina considered filming a cameo for season seven, but it just didn’t work out. 

“I'm kind of in a different mindset now,” she says. “So, it was just like, if I can do it, great. If I can't, I'm not going to force myself.”
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