Jen Shah is making the most of her time in federal prison. The “Real Housewives of Salt Lake City” star is embarking on a creative endeavor while serving time at a federal prison in Bryan, Texas.
In March 2021, Shah was arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and money laundering as part of a telemarketing scheme that targeted the elderly, according to CNN. The mom of two was ultimately sentenced to 6.5 years in the Texas prison, but a little more than a month after she started her prison term, her sentence was reduced by one year, NBC News reported in March 2023.
But with five years in prison still ahead of her, the 49-year-old RHOSLC star has a lot of time to kill. In April 2023, Shah’s rep, Chris Giovanni, told TMZ that she is now spending time developing a stage play with some of the other prison inmates – and it’s based on her reality TV experience.
Here’s what you need to know:
Jen Shah is Developing a Real Housewives Themed Play
Giovanni told TMZ that Shah’s prison play is titled “The Real Housewives of Bryan” and it is still in the very early stages. The basic premise is that the story will revolve around some of the real-life housewives she is incarcerated with at the federal prison in Bryan.
Shah’s rep added that the Bravo star has been working in the education department and the prison library during her prison stay and has been mentoring some of the other inmates, including teaching some how to read.
Heavy has reached out to Shah’s rep for comment on her playwrighting experience but did not immediately hear back.
Shah’s new endeavor had Real Housewives fans talking on Reddit.
“She must have watched The Producers before shipping off,” one Redditor joked.
“Directing a musical in prison like she’s Rebecca Bunch,” another cracked, in reference to Rachel Bloom’s character on the CW musical sitcom “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.”
But others showed support for Shah.
“Good for her! Stay active and figure out a way to make the time go faster. And by staying creative, maybe she’ll find a way to monopolize and pay restitution,” one commenter wrote.
“It sounds like she is using her time productively and encouraging the other inmates and that’s a good thing,” added another.
Jen Shah Isn’t the 1st Real Housewives Star to Make Friends in Prison
Shah isn’t the first Real Housewives star to spend time in prison while her show is still on the air. “Real Housewives of New Jersey” star Teresa Giudice made history as the first-ever Housewives star to go to jail. Giudice spent 11 months at the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, Connecticut in 2015 and was home just before Christmas of that year,
But the RHONJ OG made the most of her time in prison. According to Us Weekly, she made multiple friends in jail, and they even threw her a birthday dinner and got her presents from the commissary.
“I met some amazing women there,” Giudice told Us following her release. “That’s what the girls do there, they help each other, it’s survival mode to get through the time. … I think about them all the time.”
During a 2020 appearance on ‘Watch What Happens Live,” Giudice revealed that she still keeps in touch with her prison roommate.
“My bunkie, yes,” she said, per BravoTV.com. “She’s an ex-politician from Westchester. She was my roommate. She was on the top. I was on the bottom. We had our own section.”
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