Celebrity Apprentice Recap: Two Finalists Revealed — Who Was Fired Before Finale?
“The Celebrity Apprentice” revealed its two finalists for season 7 on Monday’s episode. Which competitor was fired with one week to go, and who will now compete in the finale? Get the full recap here!
As Gossip Cop reported last week, there was a huge bloodbath in the boardroom, with Donald Trump firing Ian Ziering, Brandi Glanville, and Johnny Damon. The boss completely decimated their team, just leaving other trio of contestants, Vivica Fox, Leeza Gibbons, and Geraldo Rivera, in the competition. And they were just as surprised as viewers were to find out they were the final three.
Traditionally, though, the “Apprentice” finale always comes down to two finalists, so Trump still had more firing to do. As in past seasons, he asked Fox, Gibbons, and Rivera to each plead their case and say why they deserved to compete in the final task. Rivera admitted he thought he and Gibbons were “evenly matched,” and wanted to face her in the finale. Gibbons similarly suggested that Rivera deserved to continue on over Fox. The real surprise came, though, when Fox herself admitted that Gibbons was better and deserved the “Apprentice” title more than she did.
“I’ve never lied to you, Mr. Trump,” the actress said as she teared up. “It hurts, but I’m an honest woman.” Trump pointed out that no one before has championed someone over themselves like that, and expressed his admiration. After Fox again expressed satisfaction with what she accomplished to this point, and reconfirmed her belief that Gibbons and Rivera deserved to be the finalists, Trump told her, “You did a fantastic job.. Vivica, you’re fired.”
For the final challenge, Gibbons and Rivera were flown to Universal Resort, where they had to film commercials and sell vacation packages. Trump explained they would be judged on creativity, brand messaging, how much money raised through packages sold, and overall presentation in front of executives at a big party back in New York. The mogul stressed that it wasn’t simply a fundraising task, and all the components would be weighed in the final decision. The winner would receive $250,000 for their respective charities, Leeza’s Care Connection (Gibbons) and Life’s Work (Rivera).
Several eliminated contestants were brought back to assist, with Kevin Jonas, Brandi Glanville, and Johnny Damon assigned to Gibbons, who believed the Jonas Brother would be her “secret weapon” against Rivera. Gibbons quickly began her planning, and said she wanted to get pal Olivia Newton-John to sing “Magic” at their event. To support their goal of having a family-friendly concept in their video showcasing Universal as a “premiere vacation destination,” Gibbons took Jonas’ idea to have a busy family finally getting quality time through a vacation at the resort.
As the foursome explored the Universal parks, Gibbons found out one donor was giving her $120,000, more than she thought she’d bring in for the whole thing. She was ecstatic, of course, and seemed to be on the same page as Jonas with their plans. Glanville and Damon, however, seemed more interested in buying hot dogs and beer at the concession stand. The group later became concerned that Rivera would outraise them, considering he excelled at all the prior money-focused tasks, which made Gibbons and Jonas all the more determined to nail their commercial and all the creative aspects. Glanville and Damon, however, remained, um, a bit distracted. Sent on a shopping trip for souvenir store props, the pair abandoned their duties to ride rollercoasters. When they returned empty-handed, Gibbons was shocked but felt she “didn’t have time to be upset” with all that still had to be done.
Meanwhile, Rivera was given Ian Ziering, Lorenzo Lamas, and the just-fired Fox to work with, and he was not pleased, considering he previously “butted heads” with the two men. They quickly made peace, but then Rivera and Lamas didn’t see eye to eye as they brainstormed. Given, though, that Rivera was the finalist, his ideas trumped the others (no pun intended), and he planned a commercial that would showcase himself as an investigative journalist showing that the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, with its new Diagon Alley section, was loved by parents just as much as their kids.
Rivera settled on the slogan “Discover Your Inner Hero” after a meeting with the Universal executives, and soon found himself juggling “dialing for dollars,” arranging entertainment for the presentation, and trying to carry out their 90-second marketing video in just two day’s time. Ziering felt pressured by Rivera to sell one of the 10 vacation packages for the highest amount possible, considering he and the other contestants had already tapped out their financial resources during the prior tasks.
It was later decided Lamas would handle the directing of their commercial with Fox assisting, as Ziering and Rivera worked on the script. Lamas was confident their shoot would go without issue, but the next day, he was shocked and angered to find Rivera was changing the entire shot list. The two fortunately found some common ground, but hit another snag when the young actors scheduled to participate in the most important scenes were nowhere to be found. Rivera and Lamas clashed over who was responsible for the miscommunication, and lashed out, saying, “From now on, I’m in charge of every shot. This is bullsh*t!”
With that cliffhanger, the challenge will continue next week in the two-hour finale, which will once again feature a live component with Trump interviewing Gibbons and Rivera, as well as the eliminated contestants. Who do you want to win?!