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Tan France Reportedly 'Campaigned' to Replace Bobby Berk with Jeremiah Brent on “Queer Eye”

Sources told 'Rolling Stone' of the alleged "mean girl antics," after Berk previously revealed the castmates had a falling out

<p>on Kopaloff/Getty Images for A-Game Public Relations; Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times via Getty</p> Tan France and Bobby Berk

on Kopaloff/Getty Images for A-Game Public Relations; Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times via Getty

Tan France and Bobby Berk

Tan France may have had a hand in the decision to replace Bobby Berk with Jeremiah Brent on Queer Eye, according to a new Rolling Stone report.

The feature published Tuesday claims there were myriad tensions among the Fab Five and with the show's crew, including allegations of emotionally "abusive" behavior and "rage issues" against Jonathan Van Ness, citing sources. (A representative for Van Ness did not reply to PEOPLE's request for comment.)

Three unnamed sources told the outlet that France “campaigned to replace Berk” with Brent with “alleged support” from castmate Antoni Porowski. One source described the alleged behavior as “mean-girl antics.”

Reps for Netflix, France and Berk did not reply to PEOPLE's request for comment.

The streaming service revealed that Brent would be taking over Berk’s spot as the series’ interior design guru on Feb. 27, three months after Berk first announced he’d be exiting the show.

Brent, who stars alongside his husband and fellow designer Nate Berkus on HGTV’s Nate & Jeremiah by Design and The Nate and Jeremiah Home Project, has also appeared on Netflix’s Say I Do, which was developed by the same creators as Queer Eye. France was a guest on Brent’s podcast in April.

<p>Eric Charbonneau/Getty Images for Paramount Pictures</p> Jeremiah Brent

Eric Charbonneau/Getty Images for Paramount Pictures

Jeremiah Brent

Berk admitted to a rift with France, who serves as the show’s fashion expert, in an interview with Vanity Fair in January.

“I hope this interview will help extinguish some of the speculation,” Berk said. “I want people to know that Tan and I — we will be fine.”

While he admitted there was a "situation" between the two costars and he’d unfollowed France on Instagram as a result, he said they’d moved past it.

“Tan and I had a moment,” Berk said. “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.”

Related: Jeremiah Brent Is Officially Joining the Cast of Queer Eye Following Bobby Berk's Exit

“Should I have unfollowed Tan? No,” Berk continued. “Maybe I should have just muted him. But that day, I was angry, and that’s the end of it. We became like siblings — and siblings are always going to fight.”

Berk told Vanity Fair that when he and his castmates, who also include Jonathan Van Ness and Karamo Brown, finished filming season eight in New Orleans, he thought it would be the end of the show, as the seven-cycle contract they’d signed ended in September 2022.

On the final day of filming he said, “the Fab Five and the crew, we all stood there, and we took pictures and cried. We thought we were done. Mentally and emotionally, I thought we all moved on. I know I did, and I started planning other things.”

However, due to the SAG/AFTRA strike, Netflix was in need of original content and opted to renew Queer Eye. 

“We’d just assumed that the show wouldn’t come back if we all didn’t come back,” Berk said. “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.”

<p>Michael Buckner/Variety via Getty</p> Jonathan Van Ness, Bobby Berk, Antoni Porowski, Tan France and Karamo Brown

Michael Buckner/Variety via Getty

Jonathan Van Ness, Bobby Berk, Antoni Porowski, Tan France and Karamo Brown

However, Berk’s four castmates chose to renew their contracts.

“There were definitely emotions,” Berk said. “But each one of us had our reasons why we did what we did. I can’t be mad — for a second I was.”

Berk announced his departure from Queer Eye in November, with a heartfelt note to the show’s community of fans on Instagram.

Related: Bobby Berk Admits 'There Was a Situation' with Tan France That Made Him 'Angry' but 'We Will Be Fine'

“The love that I have received from you all over the last 6 years has been absolutely surreal,” he wrote. “You have tuned in and been dedicated fans and together we were able to share the healing powers of design. I learned from you all about kindness, love and acceptance and that has changed my life for the better. The way you have embraced me and accepted me for who I am is something that l will truly carry with me for the rest of my life.”

He thanked the "die-hard fans" of Queer Eye and praised the show’s “wonderful, loving, amazing, and brave” heroes before he officially confirmed he was parting ways with the series: “It’s with a heavy heart that I announce that season 8 will be my final season on Queer Eye. It’s not been an easy decision to be at peace with, but a necessary one. Although my journey with Queer Eye is over, my journey with you is not. You will be seeing more of me very soon.”

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He concluded, “I love you all so so much and I’ll meet you all in Nola for one final season. #foreverthefab5”

Shortly after the announcement, a source close to the situation told PEOPLE Berk had no hard feelings toward his costars. “Bobby’s departure is unrelated to relationships with his castmates,” the source said. “The parting was amicable.” 

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