Real Housewives Of New York City Dumps Four In 'Friendly' Break-Up

Bravo’s The Real Housewives of New York City is divorcing itself from more than half of its cast as it plans for its fifth season.

The dispatched Housewives are Cindy Barshop and Kelly Killoren Bensimon (seated in photo), and Alex McCord and Jill Zarin (standing, second and third from left).

The cast shake-up was first reported by The Hollywood Reporter, which cited a statement from Bravo that read: “Ramona Singer, Sonja Morgan and LuAnn de Lesseps will be returning for Season 5 of The Real Housewives of New York City. We’ve had a fabulous run with all the ladies and appreciate them sharing their lives with our viewers.”

Addressing the four exits, the cabler said, “It is a friendly departure… and we continue to have ongoing discussions with them.”

Season 5 of RHONY is due to premiere in spring 2012.