Vivica A. Fox has been in movies, television shows and even did a short stint on reality T.V. Recently, the veteran Hollywood actress opened up about her time on the competition series “Celebrity Apprentice” and the racially insensitive comment Ivanka Trump once said to her and fellow actress and “Cosby” child star Keshia Knight Pulliam.
During her appearance on E! ‘s “For Real: The Story of Reality T.V.” with host Andy Cohen, the pair discussed racial controversies on reality shows. During the episode Fox revealed that Trump once highlighted the way she and Pulliam spoke, telling them, “You’re certainly an articulate group.”
“I’ll never forget that when I did ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ and Ivanka Trump, she said, ‘Wow, you speak very well,'” Fox said.
Fox admitted that she wasn’t even sure if the businesswoman was cognizant of how offensive her remark was. “I hate to say it, I don’t think she knew at the time that she was insulting us,” she explained. “I really think that she thought she was complimenting us.” Host Cohen chimed in, casting doubt that Trump would even know the difference now.
The “Empire” actress continued, “She was like, ‘Oh wow, you guys are intelligent.’ Now, I’m going to say when the show aired, Twitter went crazy, like, ‘What does she mean?!'” The incident took place during the seventh season of the show, which aired in 2015. Like Fox mentioned, many were angered by Trump’s statement. They took to social media to air out their grievances, including one Twitter user who wrote at the time, “Ivanka seems a bit surprised to hear black women articulate their words & speak proper English! Honey we are educated too! #CelebApprentice.”
Fox and Cohen were joined alongside “Love and Hip Hop” creator Mona Scott-Young, “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star and singer-songwriter Kandi Burruss, and executive producer of “Preachers of L.A.” Holly Carter.
The Bravo boss continued the conversation by asking the ladies what advice they would give “a successful white producer” in television like himself. Carter answered, “I would say, take time to learn the people that you’re working with.” She added, “I would also say, learn to like your Black women.”
Cohen has faced backlash himself in the past and was even accused of being a racist by former “RHOA” star Nene Leakes. Upon the announcement of her departure from the series in October 2020, Leakes claimed that she and other Black Bravo employees were unfairly treated. She later told fans to boycott the network altogether. The network nor the host addressed those allegations.