Bobby Berk attends the 75th Primetime Emmy Awards at Peacock Theater on January 15, 2024 in Los Angeles, California Source: Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

Bobby Berk Finally Reveals the Reason He's Leaving 'Queer Eye'

Kilian Melloy READ TIME: 3 MIN.

Months after announcing that the current season of the hit show will be his last, the departing member of the Fab Five revealed the story behind his departure – and it's not what you may have heard.

As previously reported, interior design expert Bobby Berk dropped the bombshell that he would no longer be on the show in a Nov. 13 Instagram post.

Rumors instantly ignited, with a "source" telling Us Weekly, "There were many challenges with scheduling [and] there was a loss of interest from Bobby filming the show," and alleging that Berk's "heart was not in it and the rest of the cast started to resent him because of that."

Online, stories circulated that Berk and Tan France were feuding because Berk had neglected to tag France in a post; social media users also took note of the two unfollowing each other on Instagram.

But the explanation Berk gave Vanity Fair was much less juicy and much more business-related: The contracts for everyone in the cast had expired, he said, and he alone opted not to sign a new agreement for four more seasons.

"When the show began, says Berk, he and the rest of the Fab Five – fashion consultant France, culture and lifestyle coach Karamo Brown, food and wine guru Antoni Porowski, and beauty maven Jonathan Van Ness – signed a seven-cycle contract that lasted through September 2022, when they wrapped filming on two seasons in New Orleans," the publication detailed.

Berk told the magazine that when the final day of shooting came about, the show's cast and crew "all stood there, and we took pictures and cried."

Berk added: "Mentally and emotionally, I thought we all moved on. I know I did, and I started planning other things."

But Netflix had other ideas, thanks to the two strikes – writers and actors – that partially overlapped and that paralyzed production on movies and TV shows in Hollywood for months. That's when the streamer offered the cast a new contract for additional seasons.

"Berk decided not to sign," VF recounted, "and at first, he says, other members of the Fab Five were considering doing the same."

"We'd just assumed that the show wouldn't come back if we all didn't come back," Berk told the publication. "I was like, I'm not going to be having FOMO 'cause the show is not going to happen. I had become at peace with it."

But somewhere along the way things shifted for the other four of the Fab Five, all of whom decided to take the new deal.

"And with only one of us not coming back," Berk told VF, the streamer decided that it "could recast one person."

Berk admitted that "There were definitely emotions" involved with the others signing on and him deciding not to. "But each one of us had our reasons why we did what we did."

The design expert said that "for a second I was" angry about how things worked out. Not enough so, though, that he was going to derail the next chapter he was already writing in his career.

"All the plans that I had made when I thought we weren't coming back, I just wasn't willing to change those," Berk said. "I would have had to pump the brakes on multiple other projects that are already in process."

Among those new projects: a new show of his own, which Berk dropped word about shortly after announcing he would be leaving "Queer Eye" – though he didn't offer any details.

As for the "feud" with Tan France, Berk did acknowledge some friction had existed between the two – but, he said, it played no part in his decision to leave the show.

"Tan and I had a moment," was how the design divo put it. "There was a situation, and that's between Tan and I, and it has nothing to do with the show. It was something personal that had been brewing – and nothing romantic, just to clarify that."

"Queer Eye" will continue – and Bobby Berk will keep on being fabulous on his own.

by Kilian Melloy , EDGE Staff Reporter

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.

Read These Next