2020 WWE Hall of Famers The Bella Twins were recently profiled by The New York Times. The piece looks at how the 36 year old twins are preparing to give birth later this summer, and how they're filming the 6th season of WWE and E!'s Total Bellas during the coronavirus pandemic.
It was previously confirmed that Nikki Bella and fiance Artem Chigvintsev are set to welcome their first child, a baby boy, in early August. We've known that Brie Bella and husband Daniel Bryan were set to welcome their second child at around the same time, but now The NY Times reports that Brie is due to give birth in late July.
The Bella Twins have been "frantically filming" season 6 of Total Bellas from their homes in a gated community in Phoenix, Arizona, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A skeleton crew had been living in nearby Airbnb rentals. It was noted that E! crew members are required to wear masks on set at all times, have their temperatures checked multiple times per day, and maintain proper social distancing from behind the camera.
Total Bellas filming had just started in "little bits and pieces" but was forced to shut down for 5 weeks when the coronavirus began to spread earlier this year. The decision was then made to resume production in early May, with a new list of safety protocols. Total Bellas was one of the first Bunim/Murray Productions reality shows to resume production during the pandemic, a decision made more urgent due to The Bella Twins' impending due dates. Bunim/Murray also produces top reality shows like Keeping Up With The Kardashians, Project Runway, Miz & Mrs., Total Divas, and others.
Total Bellas production is now getting by with a maximum of 6 people present for filming at a given location. Before the pandemic hit, there were as many as 16 people present for filming.
Filming for season 6 of Total Bellas wrapped in early July, for the most part, but they're keeping at least two crew members in Arizona so they can wait for the Bella Babies to arrive. Outside cameras are banned from the hospital delivery rooms, but there will be footage taken by Bryan and Artem.
It was also noted that Nikki and Brie, and their partners, live right next door to each other. Nikki described it as "no boundaries" and revealed that she and Artem actually conceived their child in Brie's home. There is "zero property line" between the two homes, according to Brie.
"I literally just walk over [for morning coffee], the majority of the time in my robe and slippers, just walk into Brie's," Nikki said. "If she's cooking food, I guess I have the expectation that there's some for me."
Brie added, "We feel we have a mini-compound. We don't ever feel alone."
Regarding Total Bellas production, Nikki and Brie do not wear masks while filming. They told The Times that they have felt protected, but somewhat disconcerted.
"It's a different feeling this season than I've ever felt before, because we can't be close," Brie said, adding that they have limited their exposure to anyone else who has not self-isolated for two weeks, meaning they've had to do almost all of their own hair and makeup for this season. They had professional makeup done leading into the season finale, but not professional hair work.
The sixth season of Total Bellas is set to premiere this fall. Stay tuned for updates.