Blake Lively rose to stardom thanks in large part to her role as Serena van der Woodsen on the hit show Gossip Girl.
But Lively wasn’t the first actress the network pitched.
In a recent interview with Buzzfeed, the show’s casting director David Rapaport talked about how things could’ve been a lot different.
“I feel like you go back and think, There is nobody else that could have played these characters. I think the network initially pitched us Ashley Olsen and Rumer Willis…”
Now that would’ve been different.
Ultimately, Rapaport knew that Blake Lively was the only one for the role.
“Blake Lively was literally the only person I could think of for Serena. I had seen her in Accepted and at that time, there were no Lena Dunhams or Zooey Deschanels — it was all about beauty and glamour, but being approachable and Blake was the ultimate It Girl. I was terrified we wouldn’t get her or they wouldn’t like her because, honestly, they show lived and died on her and I had absolutely no other ideas. And I read so many people. I think at the end of the day, we tested Blake, Katie Cassidy, who is now on Arrow, and this girl who was [Serena] on the Gossip Girl books. Not even her face, just her legs. But it made sense.
Any doubts? Check out Blake Lively’s Gossip Girl audition tape:
Lively is currently filming her next movie, an untitled Wood Allen project, with Kirsten Stewart and Jesse Eisenberg.
A couple of weeks ago, Lively shut down her lifestyle website Preserve.
“We have an incredible team of people who do beautiful work, but we launched the site before it was ready, and it never caught up to its original mission: it’s not making a difference in people’s lives, whether superficially or in a meaningful way. And that’s the whole reason I started this company, not just to fluff myself, like, ‘I’m a celebrity! People will care what I have to say!’ It was so never meant to be that, and that kind of became the crutch because it was already up and already running, and it’s hard to build a brand when you’re running full steam ahead — how do you catch up?” said Lively of the decision to shutter it after just a few months.