"She's just such a fun, easygoing personality to be around," the Oppenheim Group founder tells PEOPLE
"I really miss Heather," Jason Oppenheim tells PEOPLE ahead of season 7, which drops on Netflix Friday. "I miss Heather being around when we're filming, and she's [living] in Newport Beach, so I'm not really seeing her as much in the L.A. office anymore. She's just such a fun, easygoing personality to be around. So I think everyone misses Heather when she's not here."
El Moussa first revealed in March that she hadn’t been called back to film the reality hit after her maternity leave. She and husband Tarek El Moussa welcomed their first child together, son Tristan, in January.
"Season 7 is filming right now, but I've been off maternity leave and I've been excited to get back to work and so far I have not been called back," she said during an interview with Adrienne Bailon and Keltie Knight for E! News.
When Bailon asked how that made her feel, she replied, "It's been a little frustrating. So [I'm] not sure what's been going on."
More recently, Heather — one of the original cast members on the show, which premiered in 2019 — responded to being left out of the poster for the new season.
"Looks like I got pushed in the water," she wrote on Instagram in October, adding, "its a good thing I can swim! Congrats to my girls on S7! 💗 You may see me in a few episodes….. 💁🏼♀️"
Fans of Heather can also catch her and Tarek on HGTV’s The Flipping El Moussas, which was renewed for a second season in July.
"Ready for round 2??! Season 2 of The Flipping El Moussas is OFFICIALLY coming soon!! 🔥👏🏻👏🏻," the couple wrote in a joint Instagram post at the time. “This is the announcement that so many of you have been asking us for and we’re so excited for you guys to see an even bigger & BETTER season!!!”
Heather’s Selling Sunset costar Bre Tiesi has also weighed in on Heather's reduced role, saying she was “devastated to lose” Heather as a regular presence on the show.
"I absolutely adore Heather," Tiesi told E! News in July. "I’m very sad to hear that she is not going to be as big a part."
Talking to PEOPLE ahead of the premiere, Oppenheim described the new season of Selling Sunset as "complicated," saying that viewers will get to know the agents "in different ways" and "see some different dynamics play out that maybe they didn't expect."
He adds that the show is kept fresh by "a never-ending supply of very interesting dynamics" between the agents.
"I think people can relate to at least two or three of the women in every season and what they're going through," he says. "And it's so real. It's so raw. It's so organic. The women are so open and direct in front of the camera. So you're just getting an unfiltered look at just very dynamic interactions between women that I think people find very interesting."
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