You read about LeAnn Rimes and Eddie Cibrian daily (usually with a dash of Brandi Glanville thrown in), and now you'll have the chance to see them on TV once a week as their new reality show, LeAnn & Eddie, premieres on VH1 this Thursday.
So why would the couple voluntarily sign up to put even more of their private life under a microscope?
"I've always been on board [to do a reality show], but it was just figuring out the right type of show. When you say reality television, immediately there is a negative connotation that it's going to be invasive and exploitive," Cibrian, 41, told Yahoo during the Television Critics Association press tour. "And that's not my personality — nor my wife's. That's not what we wanted to do."
"Trust me, we've been approached many many times over the years," Rimes, 31, added. "They wanted to do more of a docu-follow kind of series, [but] we didn't want to let people in like that. Like Eddie said, it can be very exploitive and we already have enough of that going on.
"It's been over five years now since all the craziness started, and I think it's been enough time that we can laugh at it, and we hope people will laugh with us," the country singer continued. "The situation wasn't laughable at all, but now all of the craziness, having a blended family — we go through all the same stuff every blended family goes through. It's just magnified."
Of course, "the situation" Rimes is referring to is that when she and Cibrian got together they were married to other people. Although LeAnn's ex-husband, Dean Sheremet, has stayed out of the spotlight since the "craziness" five years ago, Eddie's ex-wife, Brandi Glanville, 41, has been front and center with them in the tabloids.
So did they discuss anything with Glanville — who stars on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills — before agreeing to do the show? Spoiler alert: She is brought up in the first episode.
"No, no, no, no," Eddie quickly replied, laughing, "She had no input creatively on our show! When something like [Brandi] comes up, it really comes up organically… in [a] conversation that we would have regarding something that has happened through the press or privately."
The first episode of LeAnn & Eddie is called "Fifty Million Ways to Leave Your Lover" and deals with a Star magazine story from October in which the outlet declared the couple was headed for a $50 million dollar divorce.
"I know [Brandi] commented on that when it came out," said Rimes. "It was in the article that Eddie has to text her when I'm crazy just for moral support — he makes the joke [about texting her during the first episode]. That's how we are with each other especially with that situation. It's so difficult at times, [but] it's become a little bit easier. I'm waiting for the arrows to start flying after the first episode," LeAnn laughed, looking at Eddie. "But we don't say anything that isn't true."
The one thing you won't see on LeAnn & Eddie are his two kids Mason, 11, and Jake, 7. (The boys also don't appear in any episodes of The Real Housewives). "That was [decided] right away, there wasn't even a discussion about it," Cibrian explained, adding that they "aren't fazed at all" by the fact their parents are on TV.
"Mason saw me the other night on E! News and he was just playing his game and he heard my voice and looked up and he was like, 'Oh hi, Le, there are two of you. I can't handle two of you,'" laughed Rimes. "And that's it. He watches for a second, goes back to his game, and then walks away. That's just what we do."
As for their VH1 show, Cibrian feels that it is "family television" and "there's nothing really that's cringe-worthy that I need to shield them from."
"It's not something we would be horrified if the kids saw," the "How Do I Live" singer chimed in. However, the kids are certainly conscious of the headlines, especially when they involve LeAnn, Eddie, and Brandi.
"The other day, Jake was on Eddie's phone and he's like, 'Oh, Mom texted you? I thought Mom couldn't text you, I thought you blocked her.' He's 7, and it's like, okay, he's obviously read this somewhere," she revealed. "I think that's more traumatic than anything we could have said on the show."
LeAnn continued: "The kids are aware of what's going on, but they're also loved in both homes and I think that's all that matters. They're loved in both homes and they're happy in both homes. They obviously know it's difficult for us to get along, but we do in front of them. We're trying our best and I think that's all that we can do. We are cordial in front of the kids, it's something I hope — you know, we do the best we can with having a blended family and the children come first."
So have Eddie and LeAnn discussed having kids of their own?
"Oh, it's a discussion, no question," Eddie said. "I think we both want it. It's just when is it a good time to do it?"
"But I guess I've had seven kids by now," LeAnn quipped, joking that's one reason she loves to be in a bikini as much as possible.
"Don't fool yourself, there are bikinis on the show," Eddie laughed, telling LeAnn she should start her own bikini line.
"I'm really considering that. I really am," she said sarcastically. "It has become a running joke. At least I can do it well. Nothing is sagging yet. Eventually it will be, 'LeAnn is always in a muumuu.'"
LeAnn & Eddie premieres Thursday, July 17, on VH1 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.