Exclusive: Taylor Jacobson: "I Don't Know Anyone Who Hasn't Been Supposedly Fired By Rachel Zoe"
Fans of Bravo's The Rachel Zoe Project know that between seasons, Zoe and her slave-driving assistant Taylor Jacobson have parted ways.
The end — which you won't see on the upcoming third season — wasn't pretty.
According to various reports, including this one in WWD, Zoe and her husband and business partner, Rodger Berman, accused Jacobson of stealing merchandise from her company, among other things, and allegedly fired her during the taping of the first episode of Season 3, which premieres Aug. 3 at 11/10c. Taylor claimed otherwise back in November.
Whatever the case, this appears to be a loss for the show. Love her or hate her, Jacobson stood for showbiz assistants everywhere, complaining openly about inane requests — Remember the time Zoe wanted to organize an anniversary party for herself during the Oscars? — and otherwise demanding justice. Zoe may have been the show's initial draw — her thinness, her work with such past super-skinny clients as Lindsay Lohan and Nicole Richie, her overuse of "Bananas!" and "I die!" as positives — but it was Jacobson's unwillingness to settle that kept viewers talking.
Now, Jacobson's breaking her silence — a bit — and telling TVGuide.com about life without Zoe and former fellow assistant Brad Goreski. She says she's been told about the premiere episode, the majority of which is devoted to discrediting Jacobson as a stand-up employee. She opens up as much as she can about what went down at Camp Zoe and what the future holds.
TVGuide.com: What are you up to now that you're on your own?
Jacobson: I'm still styling. I do various jobs, campaigns, editorials, commercials, promos for TV shows. I'm kind of trying out all different fields. Still doing the whole celebrity thing: press junkets, premieres, red carpet, film festivals, personal shopping. I'm also consulting on a denim line for Kasil called Kasil+Taylor Jacobson. We're going to come out with these great skinny jeans that are in stores now and are selling really well, which I'm very excited about. In August at the trade show, we're also going to introduce a bunch of non-denim pants and separates. ... I even have a blog, and every week I write about what's on my mind for Everyday Minerals. I've been blogging since December — everything from how to throw a garden dinner party to caftans to picture of my parents in the '70s, because they were so cool. It's literally anything.
TVGuide.com: So you've heard about the premiere. What happened there? Why did you leave?
Jacobson: Uh-huh. I've heard a lot about it. ... For legal reasons, I'm not really allowed to discuss it, which makes it hard for me to give "the juice." But what I heard about the first episode is pretty amazing. I heard there is ripping out of pictures and throwing them into the fireplace
TVGuide.com: Yes, she rips out the pictures you and Brad took for Paper magazine and throws tem into the trash. Do you still talk to Brad? You two had become close.
Jacobson: No. You know, you've got to sever ties to a toxic environment and go forward. I'm trying to stay positive. There's obviously horrible s--- being said about me in the media. It's no secret that certain people who shall not be named are trying to blacklist me and get me kicked off jobs and talk s--- to some of my clients. There has been a lot of cattiness from certain people. I don't go into it. People who work with me and know me know I'm not about this bulls---. I'm about the job. I can't get caught up in this. Ties were severed. Whatever happened happened, and it's time to move forward.
TVGuide.com: In terms of the cattiness, has there been fallout for you? Has it cost you work?
Jacobson: It's been a mix. When one door closes, another one opens. It's definitely been... I don't want to say it's been rocky because I've been working consistently. I've gotten to do a lot of things I wanted to do. But there are people out there who can throw their weight around.
TVGuide.com: The people who worked with while you were with Rachel, have they stuck by you?
Jacobson: Yes, pretty much for the most part.
TVGuide.com: Was there any thought to appearing in the third season? To defend yourself, if nothing else?
Jacobson: No, I was done. No more TV for me. My ultimate dream is to be a costume designer, so if I could get into that over the next five to 10 years, I'd be stoked.
TVGuide.com: Do you feel like you were fairly portrayed on the show before you left?
Jacobson: Reality TV is faux reality. It's a contrived reality, and everyone knows that. I was an extremely hard worker and I still am. So, in that sense, yes. As much as people want me to go off on the show and Rachel, I don't really have anything to say about the woman who I am not allowed to talk about. Really, I don't have ill will. It's time to move on and I have.
TVGuide.com: The first episode contains flashbacks to your happier times with Rachel. She often referred to you as family. Are you hurt at all by how things have ended?
Jacobson: I have an answer for that, and while I would like to say what I have on my mind, I don't think it would be good. When you work for anyone high profile, you sign a confidentiality agreement. That's why I really can't talk about it. I will say this: I don't fit into sample sizes! Where did that even come from? I'm not a size zero. I have 34-D boobs! Models are flat. I don't fit into samples. I don't understand. It's the weirdest thing to me. I'm fat.
TVGuide.com: Oh, please.
Jacobson: I don't fit into samples! God, when is this show going to end?
TVGuide.com: Word is you have been approached by other networks to do a spin-off series.
Jacobson: Yes, but I'm not interested. Also, I'm not a catty person. I did four years. I've worked with other celebrity stylists. With Rachel, I was just at a point where it was time for me to do it on my own and concentrate on my career and on where I want to go and what I want to do — and not be under someone's shadow. Things in the styling business? The lines get blurred. Things get misconstrued. There are always two sides to a story. I don't know anyone who hasn't been supposedly fired by Rachel — just investigate her past with clients and assistants. It doesn't matter really what I say. The going back and forth? I don't want to keep perpetuating it. There are 50 million things that I could say, but where is that going to get me
TVGuide.com: I read that you have an assistant yourself now.
Jacobson: I have an assistant and a few interns. I always like being in charge.