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The Ex Factor: Bravo Asked Bethenny Frankel’s Estranged Husband Jason Hoppy To Appear On Show Without Her Consent! Surprise Confrontation In Store?

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Dec. 5 2014, Updated 7:02 a.m. ET

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Bravo had been counting on Bethenny Frankel’s return to save the failing Real Housewives of New York franchise. But since she’s failed to deliver, RadarOnline.com has learned, they turned to the next-best option: her estranged husband Jason Hoppy! An insider tells Radar that network honchos recently approached him about making a surprise appearance on the show, without his ex’s consent.

"Bravo thought having Bethenny and Jason work out their ongoing issues related to the divorce in front of the camera would be ratings gold,” an insider explained. "The scenes Bethenny has filmed with the other ladies have been rather boring, and producers have been disappointed.”

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"Bethenny wasn't consulted about the proposal because she would have been livid,” the source said. But did he say yes?

"Jason turned it down flatly because he wants nothing to do with the show ever again!” the source said. "As for trying to resolve the major problems facing Bethenny and Jason, it just won't happen."

Meanwhile, Frankel has told producers that her boyfriend Michael Cerussi is off limits too.

The Skinny Girl mogul is being “very secretive about Michael, and their relationship whenever she has been filming,” a source previously told Radar. “For Bethenny this time, she doesn’t want there to be a strong focus on her personal life.”

“Expect Michael to pop up in scenes, but it won’t be in depth,” the source added. “Bethenny wants to keep the relationship private for several obvious reasons.”

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