Exclusive: Meet The MunnRoyds!

1 03 2010

In my Real-Life Relationships series, I wrote how One Tree Hill held the honor of being the only teen drama to ever have married cast members. But they also held the dishonor of being the only show with divorced cast members when that same couple split. I’m happy to say honor has been restored this season with the introduction of Scott Holroyd as David. Holroyd’s recurring role meant he was starring on the very same show his wife, Allison Munn, has been on as Lauren for more than a year now.

Munn and Holroyd haven’t yet had the privilege of sharing scenes together but the excitement of just working on the same set has pleased them both. They were also more than enthusiastic about doing a joint interview and officially introducing everyone to the MunnRoyds.

TeenDramaWhore: Is this your first joint interview?

Munn: This is our first joint interview–except for the man who married us. We had an interview with the man who married us and that was equally as fun.

TDW: I am very honored, then, to be your first professional joint interview.

Munn: It’s very exciting. We’re having some wine and sitting down. This is fun.

Holroyd: You got the exclusive.

TDW: I’m very excited. Allison, we covered a lot of ground in our first interview, but something I forgot to ask you was how you got involved with One Tree Hill in the first place. Was it the typical casting call-audition route?

Munn: It was. The part came down the pipes and I went in. It was cool because I was sitting in the room waiting for everyone and I didn’t know who was actually going to be in the audition but [creator] Mark Schwahn walks in and I had known Mark back when I was on What I Like About You. Mark used to come by our set a lot so I was excited to see him again because he was always so nice. And then my friend Joe Davola walked. He’s one of the producers on One Tree Hill but he was also one of the producers on What I Like About You. So it was just a little mini-reunion and it took a minute to have the actual audition because we had to catch each other up on our lives. So that was fun. Then I auditioned and I think I found out that night that I got the part. It was kind of perfect because the day I flew in, I got into Wilmington at night and it was the show’s Christmas party. I went in and I went straight to the Christmas party and got to meet everyone there, which was a lot of fun.

TDW: That’s a great way to ease the stress of having to meet everyone when you first get on set.

Munn: Oh, yeah. It’s stressful when you guest-star on a show because they’re a tight-knit group and you’re a stranger coming into their world. But these people could not have been more accommodating or nice. It’s truly been a blessing to meet these people.

TDW: Your first episode was when Jamie [Jackson Brundage] asks you out on his little date [Episode 6.16, Screenwriter‘s Blues]. Did you sign on to do just that one episode or did you know there would be more?

Munn: I was only booked for that episode and when I read the scenes, the way they originally read, there was supposed to be a flirtation with Dan [Paul Johansson]. But they were very careful to not make it that way. I don’t know if they had it in their minds that I would go on. I finished that episode and I came home over the holidays and Mark Schwahn called me and pitched me the [storyline] that I would start dating Skills [Antwon Tanner]. That was really exciting. That was a great call to get.

TDW: I’m sure. So, Scott, last year did you visit Allison on set at all?

Holroyd: Yes, actually. I knew Joe from the What I Like About Days. I met Schwahn during Allison’s work on One Tree Hill and Mark was familiar some of the work I had done. I went and visited the Jerry Rice episode [7.01, 4:30 a.m. (Apparently They Were Traveling Abroad)]. I was in North Carolina during that time and Allison texted me and said, “Hey, do you know who Jerry Rice is?”

Munn: No, I think I texted you like, “Hey, have you ever heard of some guy named Jerry Rice?” Clearly I had no idea who he was.

Holroyd: And I was like, “Uh, yes! He’s only the best wide receiver in the history of the NFL.” And she was like “Well, I’m playing football with him right now.” I turned the car around and went to set. That was the first time I was on set and hung out with everybody there.

Munn: The greatest thing also about these people is that we also got to know a lot of them back here [in Los Angeles]. When they’re not in production in North Carolina, we tend to hang out and go to dinner here in Los Angeles. So he had met them socially as well here.

TDW: So then when the part of David came up, did you have a formal audition?

Holroyd: Yeah, I went in and read for Mark. It was a typical audition and then I got the call when I was in North Carolina to visit Allison and visit family. I got the offer when I was there so I ended up not leaving North Carolina and staying for the rest of the summer to shoot [my] first four episodes. It was actually perfect timing and a perfect situation because it’s always nice to work with friends. Mark had become a pal through all of this when Allison was in season 6. We’d hang out, like she said, go out to dinner with he and his wife. It was just a fun situation for us both and it was also fun to be home because Allison and I are both from that area. My mom and dad live in Myrtle Beach, which is 45 minutes away from Wilmington so that whole summer Allison and I were there with both of our dogs and it was the best summer on record for us.

Munn: It really was. We always say there’s very few times in your life when you’re having a wonderful time and you’re aware of how lucky you are and aware of the fact you’re going to look back on this moment in your life and reflect on it and say, “Wow, remember when we got to do that?” We were very aware of how good we had it this past summer. It was wonderful.

Holroyd: Was this the first time you were working on the same project?

Munn: Well, technically no. We were both on That 70’s Show. We were never on set at the same time. Scott did an episode and I think I did the episode after him. So technically we had but not like this.

TDW: On One Tree Hill, Lauren is a much a happier character than David has been. Scott, as someone who is happily married in real life, is it difficult to get into David’s frame of mind or do you embrace the challenge of playing someone so different from you?

Holroyd: You always embrace it. It’s fun. You can kind of empathize and understand. We’ve all had disappointments and adversity in our lives and you grasp onto that to figure out where the character’s coming from. So the challenge was fun.

Munn: Believe it or not, this is one of the nicer characters he’s played. He usually plays like rapists…

Holroyd: Murderers, wife-beaters.

Munn: Wife-beaters. So, yeah, this has been a departure from his normal roles.

Holroyd: Yeah, so when I got the offer from Mark, he was like, “Yeah, this is not like the things you normally play” because he had seen some of my work before. He was like, “Gosh! There is no vigilance in [David]. He’s a nice guy.”

Munn: I think Joe Davola was surprised, too, because Joe knew mostly his work when he on Dirty Sexy Money. I don’t know if you saw his arc on that but he ran the gamut. He hit women–

Holroyd: Pistol-whipped a woman.

Munn: Pistol-whipped a woman, he shot a person, he killed a person. It was a lot for them to wrap their head around, to have Scott be the nice guy for a change. I loved seeing that. I mean, yeah, he was in pain but it was really neat for me to see Scott play that role.

TDW: At what point did you know you’d be coming back for the Taylor [Lindsey McKeon] storyline?

Holroyd: Mark called and he was happy with how things had turned out and the arc of the story. He said there’d be some more stuff coming down the pipe. That’s all I knew. I didn’t know in what way I was going to be used or what way David was going to come back but he said there’d be more stuff for me to do. So when I got the call for the next little bit with Taylor and when I read the script, I was like, “Ohhhkay. Okay.” That’s when you see a little bit of David’s…kind of vindictive side. Maybe vindictive isn’t the right word.

Munn: No, he was kind of vindictive.

TDW: I was going to say vindictive, too.

Holroyd: Yeah, but it wasn’t really honest vindictiveness. It was more…

TDW: It came from a place of hurt.

Holroyd: Yes. It came from hurt. And when he realized it was all a lie, that’s when he kind of bailed on the whole thing because he was really just relying on Taylor. I think Taylor was honest in her approach to her sisters and I think David was just kind of going along with that, like “Okay.” I think David was looking at it as “Quinn hurt me. How can I hurt her back?” Taylor was the way to do that. I think that’s how that all came about. I think David kind of relished the moments, like at the dinner scene. I think David was just relishing watching Quinn [Shantel Van Santen], even though Quinn stayed above it all. But I think he relished it until he found out she didn’t really sleep with Clay [Robert Buckley]. That’s when his world really came crashing down again. David just got–

Munn: He got kicked. He got hammered.

Holroyd: He got kicked on all sides. Even when he tried to be forceful and be a little vindictive, he got hit again. I felt bad for David and I fought for David and I thought he was right in how he approached things. I agreed with him.

Munn: I really loved seeing those flashback scenes with him and Shantel [Episode 7.07, I And Love And You] because it was nice to see David happy and in a good place. That added, for me, a lot of depth to both their characters.

TDW: It did. It gave us the point of view of where David was coming from–what was the marriage he had with Quinn like? You would think anyone would be upset they’re getting divorced but we didn’t know what Quinn was leaving behind.

Munn: Right. And it’s hard because they had such a great thing. I think a lot of people were like, “Why is Quinn leaving this great marriage?” but, being in a relationship that actually works, you do really change a lot as people. If you don’t grow together, the growing apart feels so lonely and I think that’s what Quinn was really haunted by, her loneliness. David wasn’t the man she originally married.

Holroyd: Of course, I’m gonna side with David. I don’t think he necessarily changed.

Munn: I think he grew up.

Holroyd: I think he was thinking ahead and he was growing up and evolving and thinking, “Hey, I have a passion”–which was Quinn’s thing, “Stick to your passion”–“but if the passion doesn’t pay the bills, let’s be honest. You don’t want to be motivated by money but money is to an extent a necessity, so let me get a job that affords us a life that we can live on and grow and have a family.” So I saw where David was coming from. I don’t think he necessarily changed who he was; he just wanted to better his family. That’s my opinion on David but, of course, I’m going to stick up for my man.

TDW: I think the fans saw it from both sides. I think there were people were questioning, “What is Quinn doing?” and they wanted to see more of David. And there were people who accepted she wasn’t happy and wanted a change and to move on. I would also venture to guess a lot of the fans are younger and not married, so it might’ve been hard to understand. Maybe because they’re not married, they think that moving on is an easier thing to do.

Munn: Yeah, that’s intuitive.

Holroyd: A lot of people were asking, “Why?” A lot people were getting frustrated with the Quinn storyline and asking “Why would she want to move on? She has no reason.” And my explanation for the storyline was when you grow, you either grow together or you grow apart and sometimes you grow apart. It’s as simple as that. I think that frustrated people. It’s so simple that it frustrated people. It would’ve been a lot of easier had there been infidelity or something else. But it was just a matter of just growing apart. It’s as simple and as complicated as that.

TDW: I’ve been wondering where Quinn and David lived. I think the implication was that you guys were out of town. But I think people liked David and I know I would’ve liked to see him stick around and I came up with a way to have him stick but I didn’t know if he actually lived in Tree Hill or not.

Munn: I don’t think he does live in Tree Hill.

Holroyd: I don’t think he does either.

Munn: But what’s your way to make him stick? I want to hear it! I like it!

TDW: Well, David was in his own way a filmmaker. I guess documentary was more his style but he liked filmmaking. And you have another filmmaker in Tree Hill–you have Julian [Austin Nichols] making his movie. And I can easily see David trying to get a job on the set to be near Quinn, even though she’s moving on with Clay. You can just extend the length of that triangle, where Quinn has to deal with having her ex-husband living in town with them and working with her sister’s friend’s boyfriend, ‘cause everybody in Tree Hill is connected.

Munn: And Julian needs a good guy friend to hang out with.

TDW: He does.

Munn: And David needs a nice girlfriend who, perhaps, is a schoolteacher.

Holroyd: Named Lauren.

Munn: Named Lauren.

Holroyd: That’s a petition! Petition it! David and Lauren!

TDW: That would be great! Could you imagine if we got that going?

Holroyd: That would be insane.

TDW: I think working on Julian’s film is a totally plausible way to have David stick around and evolve into more than just Quinn’s ex.

Munn: I think you’re right.

Holroyd: Put it out there, Shari! Put it out there!

Munn: It’s up to you! I think you’re right. I think the Julian connection makes a lot of sense.

TDW: With Lauren, in 7.12 [Some Roads Leave Nowhere], that was the last episode before a hiatus for us and we saw Skills go to L.A. and people thought that was it for Skills and that therefore that would be it for Lauren. Did you think that, too, or did you know about the plans to tie her in with Mouth [Lee Norris] later on?

Munn: I didn’t know it was going to be with Mouth. I knew something was going to happen. They had the idea to have Skills come back and I would be dating someone else. I didn’t know it was going to be Mouth. So during those first scenes when I hang out with Mouth [Episode 7.14, Family Affair], I come and clean up the apartment and all that–

Holroyd: CSI-style.

Munn: Yeah, the CSI kind of stuff. We didn’t know we were going to be paired off. What I was told is that the writers watched those scenes and they could see a lot chemistry between the two of us and wrote to that.

TDW: Wow! I never would’ve guessed that it happened in that order!

Munn: I know! Me either. I remember actually talking to Paul Johansson, who directed that episode. I was like, “Look. I’ve been hanging out with this guy all day”–and typically on shows like One Tree Hill when that happens, usually romance springs from it–and I remember saying to him, “Do we need to be really careful to avoid any sort of romantic tension?” And he said, “Don’t play to it and don’t play against it. Just play the scene as it is. You don’t need to think that far ahead.” And I was like, “Okay, fine.” But I still didn’t expect us to end up having any sort of liaison, that’s for sure.

TDW: That’s such a treat to know because people watched those scenes and said, “Oh, I know what’s coming! Mouth and Lauren are getting together!”

Munn: Right! They saw it before us. That’s what some of the writers told me. It’s kind of neat that they do pay attention to that stuff and they write to it. I love that.

TDW: So then you did find out and what was your reaction?

Munn: I felt bad! As Allison, I felt bad because of Millie [Lisa Goldstein]. I didn’t feel bad because of Lauren’s relationship with Skills because of what had come out in some of the scenes. Skills moved. He didn’t ask me to move with him. When I pressured him, he was like “Fine, go with me” but that felt like it was half-hearted so I said no. And then we kept up a phone relationship for a while but then it just petered out, like he stopped calling me. I think it had been from the time Skills left and Lauren started having feelings for Mouth, I think it had been a while. It wasn’t just like a month. I think it was 3-6 months in the way the linear storyline goes. So I think that’s enough time for a relationship to peter out. Lauren kind of knew the relationship was done. We’ll see what happens with Skills. Maybe it wasn’t done on his end.

TDW: I do have a question about that but I want to go to back to something you just said. You as Allison felt bad for Millie?

Munn: Yeah, because I think their relationship has been so sweet. I love Mouth and Millie together. Of course, over the course of this season, she has treated Mouth very, very poorly and I do think Mouth deserves better. I’m pulled in both directions. When I was watching it–it’s funny, because I don’t watch it as the actress; I watch it as a fan. I love the show. So when I was watching the episode when he asked Lauren out, I was rooting for him. I wanted him to ask Lauren out because I cared for Mouth and I feel like right now Lauren is much more stable choice than Millie–however, that being said, I really do like him and Millie together.

TDW: I’m already seeing two fandoms brewing. People who not only think Mouth and Millie are the endgame for Mouth’s character but just have been attached to this couple since season 5. And then there’s other people that are just tired of the drama, tired of the back and forth and also really like Lauren and see potential in the coupling with Mouth.

Munn: Mouth is such a stand-up guy. He’s so good. And so far what we’ve seen from Lauren is that she’s grounded and good as well. I can see why the fans who are really protective of Mouth would be glad that he gravitates towards Lauren now because she seems safe. Millie’s not safe right now.

TDW: In the last episode [Episode 7.18, The Last Day Of Our Acquaintance], we first saw Lauren say, “I’ll be your partner-in-crime but I’m not going to be your rebound.” And at the end of the episode, she kind of says, “Okay, I was kind of lying. I was worried that you were going to be my rebound.” Where do you think she was coming from there?

Munn: Well, actually, in that–Joe Davola was directing that episode and he had a really great note at the beginning of that scene. And what you guys didn’t see because I think it was cut out of the episode was that a lot of us were at the funeral. You didn’t see us all at the funeral for Haley’s [Bethany Joy Galleoti] mom.

TDW: Wow! Thank you for telling me that! Keep going, please!

Munn: There was a moment in the script that was cut out of what you guys saw. Mouth looks over at Millie and Millie smiles at him and I look at that. No, wait, I don’t think Millie’s smiles  at him. It was just a moment where they pan across and they see Millie, they see Mouth and then Mouth sees me. And pretty soon, like I don’t think it’s the next scene but it’s pretty close to that, I come and knock on the door and I say my piece to Mouth. So Joe had a really good note for me. He was like, “Look. You’ve just been to a funeral. You’ve seen that life is short. You’re feeling lonely. Carpe diem.”

TDW: Nothing against the way they do the show or anything but that’s so helpful to know. That would’ve enhanced things, because you two only had two scenes in that episode that aired.

Munn: That’s true.

TDW: You had the first scene where you’re walking in town and the scene when you come to his apartment. It was very little of you two and some people said it felt weird having that second scene mixed in with the trauma of Lydia’s [Bess Armstrong] death and the funeral and what Haley was going through afterward. But there’s such another layer to it when you tell me now that you guys were at the funeral and that kind of motivated Lauren.

Munn: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I see what you’re saying. I guess it did help them [in how it aired] because they wanted the audience to be surprised by her actions but you’re right, character-wise, it did seem to come a little bit more out of nowhere.

TDW: Let me just ask you another question about the funeral. Was there any planned dialogue for that or was it always just supposed to be montage-style with a song playing?

Munn: Actually, now that you say that, I remember when we were shooting it the only dialogue was this woman who did the service. It was the typical “ashes to ashes, death to death” speech. It was sort of chilling. I was surprised to see how short that sequence was. But I think the sisters did such a great, great job–Joy and Shantel and Lindsey. They did such a great job. They made me want to cry when I saw that. But I did notice that the “ashes to ashes, death to the death,” that whole speech was taken out. So there was definitely that dialogue and there were other moments. I know you got to see Brooke [Sophia Bush] and Julian. I forget who else they showed at the funeral but they did film me and Millie and Mouth also.

TDW: That’s good to know.

Munn: It made a lot of sense for me when I read it. I hadn’t even thought about that [since] because sometimes when you’re watching the episodes, you forget what you originally said or the original flow. I didn’t even think that that might be a little jarring. That makes a lot of sense now.

TDW: In the promo for the next batch episodes, there’s a really quick scene of Skills punching Mouth. Can you tease a little bit about what gets them to that point?

Munn: Well, I think you can probably guess what might lead to that, as per what we just talked about.

TDW: Well, you mentioned before how to you it seemed the relationship with Skills petered out because he stopped calling. But when he walks in the door in that last episode, he’s back to calling you “baby” and I got the sense that maybe things weren’t so over.

Munn: Yeah, you might be right with that. It’s funny how things can be miscommunicated but from what I knew and what Lauren knew, he had stopped calling. Lauren had called him more and he had quit returning her phone calls. And she had relayed that information to Mouth, not to lead him on but because they were friends. She was confiding in him, like, “We don’t really talk anymore. He doesn’t call me back. I don’t even know how he’s doing.” She was actually finding out more of how he was doing through Mouth than through actually talking to Skills. So when he walks back in the door and he’s like “Hey, baby!” completely casual, I think Lauren was really taken aback by that.

TDW: I think we were, too.  So now I guess you’re going to have these two friends pitted against each other.

Munn: Yeah, and it’s a shame because they have a really solid friendship. I hate that for them.

TDW: And their friendship goes back to the very first episode of the show.

Munn: Yep, the pilot. That’s a shame. Never let a lady come between you, boys!

TDW: Well, if the show lived by that, we would’ve missed out on countless storylines!

Munn: Scott just whispered “bros before hos.” That’s a twist on the “Clothes Over Bros.”

TDW: Well, that’s something Brooke and Peyton [Hilarie Burton] used to say to each other. They used to say, “Hos over bros” and once it became “Hos over psychos” [Episode 4.16, You Call It Madness, But I Call It Love]. Anyway, I know Antwon tweeted that he’s in like three of the last four episodes.

Munn: Yes, I think so. I’m forgetting how many we shot. I know he’s around, definitely. I don’t know that he’s in all of the last ones. I don’t know how much I can say without giving away too much. He’s in–sorry, I’m counting–yep, you’re right. It’s three of the last four, correct.

TDW: Can you say how many more you are in?

Munn: I just wrapped for the season and they have another one to shoot. I don’t think they’ll get mad at me for saying this but I’m not in the last two.

TDW: Oh, you’re not in the last two?

Munn: No, but I don’t think that has anything to do with the story. They’re just wrapping their season and I’m not one of the main characters, you know?

TDW: Okay, so you’re not in 7.21 or 22.

Munn: Right. But that’s not a big spoiler anything. It’s not like I get shot or I drown or anything.

TDW: What are you hearing about a season eight?

Munn: You know, nobody really knows what quite to think yet. I look at the ratings versus the ratings of other shows on the network and I think we stand a pretty good chance.

Holroyd: If you’re asking me as a fan, I think it’s definitely going to get picked up for an eighth season.

Munn: I like that. I like where his head is at! I really hope so.

Holroyd: But that’s me as a fan.

Munn: That’s Scott as fan. Honestly, I talked to the major players this week and nobody really knows for sure. But everyone is very optimistic, if that helps.

TDW: Do you know if you have a future on the show if there’s an eighth season?

Munn: You know, I never know. I would hope so but I never know.

Holroyd: David and Lauren!

Munn: David and Lauren all the way!

TDW: I would totally buy it. You guys already have the chemistry.

Munn: I know. Lauren and David and David and Skills. Oops, sorry, not David and Skills–that would be a whole different show! Who else can David date? Hmm…

Holroyd: David and Haley, what?!

Munn: Aw, no! That would be a disaster!

Holroyd: All the Scott sisters, yes!

Munn: No way!

TDW: Scott, We’ll see you next on Chuck, right?

Holroyd: Yes.

Munn: It’s very exciting. He has a really good arc on Chuck.

Holroyd: Here’s the only problem: it airs Monday nights at 8!

TDW: I know!

Holroyd: So people have to be able to record two shows at once or have two televisions. They have to watch One Tree Hill.

Munn: They have to watch One Tree Hill! If you have to choose, choose One Tree Hill but if you have another option, choose One Tree Hill and Chuck.

Holroyd: Right, there you go. I think my stuff starts in a couple of months, probably mid-April, late April. I don’t know when the season ends for One Tree Hill.

Munn: I don’t know. Shari, you probably have a better idea than I do.

TDW: The show comes back from hiatus April 26 and if it airs the last four episodes in a row, that takes through May 17.

Holroyd: Uht-oh, there’s gonna be an overlap. You need to be able to record two shows at once.

TDW: So right now the next step for you both, besides Chuck, is pilot season.

Munn: Oh, good lord, it’s a nightmare!

Holroyd: Yes.

TDW: Can you tell me a little bit about that nightmare?

Munn: It’s a nightmare in the best way. The networks are buying a lot of pilots this season. So we have been completely inundated with auditions. Sometimes it’s up to three a day and it’s exhausting. It’s one of those where you have a change of clothes in your car and you go to one and you either change in the bathroom of that one or in the car on the way to the next one. It’s been pretty crazy.

TDW: Are any of these for leading roles?

Munn: Oh, yeah. They’re all for leading roles.

TDW: That’s awesome!

Munn: Yeah, it’s great. We’re reading some really good scripts. There’s good stuff out there right now. It’s an exciting time for actors in L.A.

TDW: By chance, any of the same projects?

Munn: No! I wish!

Holroyd: That’s why One Tree Hill was such a blessing. That doesn’t often, if ever.

Munn: The planets really have to be aligned for you to even get a job. So for you to get a job co-starring your husband, it’s pretty close to impossible.

TDW: I sincerely hope it happens. It’s great having you both on One Tree Hill but it would be even better to see you in a scene together.

Munn: It would be really fun to act with Scott. I’m a huge fan of his. It would be a lot of fun. And it would be really fun to continue to get to do interviews this way because we are having a blast!

TDW: I am, too! Are you guys still drinking your wine?

Munn: Yes, we actually just poured more!

Holroyd: Cheers! (glasses clink)

TDW: I heard that! That’s great. I really appreciate your time.

Munn: Absolutely, Shari. I have to say I really respect what you do. I’ve been to your site and I think you have really great interviews. You ask such great questions. You get some really cool interviews and I just have to say I’m super-impressed with you.

TDW: Wow, thank you very much! That means a lot to me. Can I print that?!

Munn: Print it and reproduce it anywhere you want! I’m very much impressed with your journalistic skills.

Holroyd: And we’re excited that this is our first dual interview. You got the exclusive.

Munn: Yeah, you’ve got the MunnRoyds.

TDW: The MunnRoyds! Do people actually call you that?

Munn: Yes!

Holroyd: We do!

Munn: We call ourselves that and we forced our friends to call us that. It could be the title of a sitcom, “Hangin’ With The MunnRoyds.”

Holroyd: There’s Brangelina; we’re the MunnRoyds!

TDW: That works!

Munn: It sounds like a terrible infection you’d get on your foot.

Holroyd: “Oh man, I’ve got a terrible case of the MunnRoyds!”

Munn: But it works for us.

TDW: Allison, have you thought about changing your name professionally?

Munn: I haven’t.

Holroyd: No.

Munn: Holroyd is a pretty difficult name. I’m taking it personally and it’ll be on my driver’s license and all that eventually but professionally, as Scott can tell you–he’s begged me, “Honey, I promise you, you don’t have to take this name!”–it’s a burden sometimes.

Holroyd: She’s worked very hard to make a name for herself as Allison Munn. She’s made a great name for herself. It’s hard enough to have a career in this business but it’s even harder with a name like Holroyd. I’m proud of my name–

Munn: I love your name!

Holroyd: But it doesn’t make things easier.

Munn: You have to spell it about five times with each person.

Holroyd: My name is not Scott Holroyd, it’s “Scott Holroyd, H-O-L-R-O-Y-D.”

Munn: “No, it’s H-O-L-R-O-Y-D. No, not I-D, Y-D. H-O-L-No, yes, H-O-L-R-O-Y-D, yes, that’s the name!”

Holroyd: That’s my goal. I just want people to know my name.

H & M: (singing) “Say my name, say my name”

TDW: Can I make a little request, Scott? Actually to both of you. You both need to tweet a bit more.

Munn: I know! It’s hard. I get nervous. And I know Scott gets even more nervous than I do.

TDW: Why are you nervous?

Munn: Because it goes out there to a lot of people! I get shy, Shari, I get shy!

TDW: I think fans just love it because it’s really unprecedented access. Before this, we were lucky if people had official sites and actually updated them. So this is a great connection. If we don’t interact with you, we’re still hearing from you and the fans just feel closer to you.

Munn: You’re right. It’s true. And I like having that kind of access, where I can write fans back. I usually direct message fans. You feel like you have access but you don’t feel completely accessible, which is nice. I think Twitter’s really great for that.

TDW: There’s actually a fan account on there for you, linked to a fansite, I think.

Munn: Really? I’ll google myself later and find it. Awesome! I’ll do that tonight.

TDW: You guys should start a joint Web site, how about that?

Munn: Babe, we should start a joint Web site and then we could do Flip videos of us hanging out.

Holroyd: That wouldn’t be boring.

Munn: That wouldn’t be boring at all. I think it’s the need to feel creative that’s a little bit stressful.

Holroyd: The need to be witty.

Munn: Yeah, I have to think of something smart and funny to say. That’s where I get stymied a little bit.

TDW: Two suggestions.

Munn: Okay, perfect.

TDW: Mike Grubbs [Grubbs], he has a blog. And he does little blog posts but he also does short little videos from the set or other places in his life. They’re maybe, like, a minute long but they’re funny. And Jana Kramer [Alex] and her fiancé, I guess it’s his Web site but there’s like episodes of their life on there and we actually got to see footage of his marriage proposal.

Munn: I saw some of that and that was incredible! That was so cool to be able to see. I love Jana Kramer. But I haven’t seen all of their videos. I have to check those out.

TDW: I have to admit I haven’t seen all of them either and it’s kind of weird that I don’t actually know them but I saw them get engaged.

Munn: I know, right?

TDW: But, anyway, I think people love to think the characters on their show are together in real life and that can be a blessing and curse but here we have two people who are together and I think people would be interested in seeing more of it if you guys were willing to put it out there.

Munn: That’s a cool idea. Maybe we will. Babe, what do you think?

Holroyd: Shari, you may have a point.

Munn: I forced him to get the Twitter account. He’s been very hesitant to do any of the social media stuff.

TDW: I know it’s hard for some people who worry about it being a big invasion of privacy and the stalking that happens in real life is transferred to online.

Munn: Yes. And I think for people who are in a position to be stalked, like pretty famous people, I can understand why they’d be scared of that stuff. It would stink I think to be a celebrity and say I’m at a certain place for lunch and have people show up. I think that’s where some people should draw the line.

TDW: The whole service is what you make of it. People say, “I don’t want to know when so-and-so is going to the bathroom.” Well, then don’t follow the person who tells you when they’re going to the bathroom.

Munn: Exactly. You’re right. It’s like when people are upset about something that’s on television. Well, then change the channel. You have a choice.

TDW: Right. People forget what is actually in their control.

Munn: Scott is so excited he can follow Conan [O’Brien] now. That was a big day.

Holroyd: He just joined. He tweets once a day. He doesn’t follow anyone. He’s got like 500,000 followers. His first tweet was…

TDW: With his squirrel!

Holroyd: “Today I interviewed a squirrel in my backyard and then threw to commercial. Somebody help me.”

Munn: I love the fact that in his picture he’s got a full beard.

Holroyd: He’s embracing his unemployment.

TDW: If Conan can tweet once a day, Scott, so can you!

H & M: Oh!!!!

Munn: Way to bring it back, Shari. Shari for the win!

Holroyd: Alright, I got you. I accept your challenge.

TDW: I’m going to hold you to that! I’ll give you tomorrow off because I’m going to publish this Monday night. Monday can start your Twitter Challenge!

Munn: Can it be a week? The Twitter Challenge Week? I’ll force him to do it.

Holroyd: Okay.

TDW: Okay, starting Monday, I’ll see if you do it.

Munn: It’s on, Shari. He just said he accepted.

Holroyd: Yeah, I accept. You throw it down and I will accept it!

Munn: I’ll make sure he follows through.

TDW: Well, thank you guys so much. If nothing else, I’m just honored to be in your history book as your first joint interview.

Holroyd: There you go!

Munn: We’re the ones who are honored. We had a good time. We really did. This was fun.

TDW: Well, thank you so much. Keep drinking your wine, relax, have a good night.

Munn: Thank you so much, Shari. You, too!

TDW: Goodnight guys!

Come back Sunday for another exclusive interview!

TDW Interview Index

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Exclusive: Executive Producer Charles Rosin Reflects on 90210’s Early Years

4 10 2009

Today is a huge milestone in the world of teen dramas.  It is the 19th anniversary of the premiere of Beverly Hills 90210, the show that started it all.

In honor of this momentous occasion, 90210 executive producer Charles Rosin, who now runs showbizzle,  revisited the show’s early years and development thereafter.

TeenDramaWhore: What was your reaction when Aaron Spelling contacted you to be part of this show, then-called Class of Beverly Hills?

Charles Rosin: Curiosity.  Mr. Spelling was a legend in this business whose deal with ABC had ended and who was struggling to re-invent himself and his company for a new generation of TV watchers.  Truthfully, I was not a big fan of his most  popular shows –“Dynasty,” “Charlie’s Angels,” “The Love Boat”  — which all seemed very old fashioned and predictable.  My taste was much more oriented to a more challenging and thought provoking television like “St.Elsewhere,” ” thirtysomething,” and “Northern Exposure,” of which I was the supervising producer for the first season and was working on when I first met “The Mister” in his office at the Warner Hollywood Studios.

TDW: As an executive producer, what exactly was your role?  How were you involved in the episode process?

Rosin: In the TV business, a creative executive producer is known as a showrunner, who literally runs all the creative aspects of a show while being responsible for its financial vitality. On 90210 I would either come up with the ideas, or approve ideas brought to me; make sure my partners (The Spelling Company and Fox) approved of these ideas; supervise my staff in writing the story and scripts (or write the stories or scripts myself) based on these ideas; re-write scenes, etc. in my capacity as “the last typewriter” if I felt the material needed punching up; incorporate legal clearances and network notes into the scripts; have a concept meeting with the directors (who I hired); cast the actors for that week’s show; supervise a production meeting with all the department heads (wardrobe, art. etc);  be available during production to deal with whatever situations might occur; work with the editors to cut the film which might require dropping scenes, changing the act breaks, changing the order of the story, etc.;  then get notes from my partners; then work with my associate producer in getting the locked film ready for airing by adding music, sound effects, correct color, dub voices — and then being the final “ear” when the show is mixed….all while developing three-five scripts simultaneously and prepping for the next episode in line to shoot.

TDW: 90210 essentially started the primetime teen drama genre.  What kind of challenges were you up against?

Rosin: Fox was all about edgy/raunchy guy-humor like “Married With Children” while 90210 was a show that not only celebrated girl-empowerment but had this wonderful character named Brenda Walsh [Shannen Doherty] who represented the notion that a teenager could be sexually active and not be a slut, but actually a role model. Unfortunately, my first set of network executives did not see the world as I did . Someday I will write a long article about the censorship that occurred after Brenda lost her virginity at the Spring Dance [ed. note: Episode 1.21, Spring Dance] to her boyfriend (who had been AIDS tested) because she was happy and not full of remorse.

TDW: When do you think 90210 crossed over that ‘initial hump’ and started achieving success?

Rosin: When the Gulf War started in February, 1991 the three networks (ABC, NBC, and CBS) suspended all commercial activity to cover the invasion. Fox didn’t have a news department back than (hard to believe; wish they didn’t have one now. ha!) so Fox broadcast whatever was on their schedule. The 90210 episodes that aired during this time included “BYOB” and “Slumber Party” [ed. note: Episodes 1.11 and 1.13].  By the time commercial activity started up again some three weeks later with the re-activation of the Nielsen ratings, our show was no longer a bottom feeder. The network took notice; gave us an extended order for season two with the understanding that we would be producing summer episodes — and we were off.

TDW: In an interview last year with The New York Times, you said you went to Beverly Hills High.  How did it compare to the fictional West Beverly?

Rosin: I graduated Beverly Hills High School in 1970 which makes me a child of the 60’s! Even though it was a time of political activism and emerging youth culture,  there were many traditions from the 1950’s that were a vital part of my high school culture — and which ultimately were incorporated into the series.  We meet Emily Valentine [Christine Elise, ed. note: see related interview] in season two at “Hello Day” where each class welcomes new students through parodies and funny skits [ed. note: Episode 2.8, Wildfire]. The dance where the cheerleader is date raped by a football player in “Teenline” in season one was called The Pigskin Prom, which was a big thang back in the day [ed. note: Episode 1.9, The Gentle Art of Listening].  And, of course, episodes in the third year season dealing with ditch day and the senior yearbook poll all were part of school life at BHHS [ed. note: Episodes 3.26 and 3.25 respectively, She Came In Through The Bathroom Window and Senior Poll]. Oddly enough,  I played baseball for Beverly against Torrance High School, which was our location for “West Beverly” and which later became the high school location for “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”  [ed. note: click here for photos of Torrance/West Bev] One other odd connection — we filmed our summer episodes at the same beach in Santa Monica Bay where the kids from Beverly Hills High School used to hang out — which was known as Tee’s, not the Beverly Hills Beach Club which was filmed at the old Sand and Sea Club right after it got condemned.

TDW: Let’s talk about the episode where Scott [Douglas Emerson] kills himself (Episode 2.14, The New Fifty Years). Was that a product of Douglas wanting to leave the show or was it precipitated by the direction of the storylines? Was there backlash to that episode?

Rosin: Given our low license fee from the network, we were always trying to cut costs — and Doug Emerson was a nice young man, but not a gifted actor. I still wanted to find a memorable way to write him off the show — and that was when I read about an accidental killing of a high school student on Prom Night in a hotel room at the Disneyland Hotel.  So while David Silver [Brian Austin Green] was getting cool and into the Brenda/Kelly/Steve Beach Club crowd, I sent Scott to hang at his grandparents house in Oklahoma off-camera for six episodes as a way to show these two old friends drifting apart before our eyes. It should be known that this was the only story line that the network and Mr. Spelling worked together to try to squash — but they could sense my passion for the story, were very supportive of [our] script and were very satisfied with the episode, which also was highly promotable and did well in the ratings.

TDW: You were there during the high school to college transition, which all the teen dramas are doing these days.  What do you think that change added to the show?

Rosin: Not only was I “there” for the transition from high school to college, but I must take credit — along with my late producing partner, Paul Waigner — for spearheading the drive to move on and let these kids grow up. Part of the problem was that our cast looked to old/were too old to play believable high school students anymore — and I convinced network president Sandy Grushow that doing a high school show that did not deal with the prospect of college was bogus. Aaron was nervous about the change, of course. He was nervous about everything.  But once I agreed to let all the kids go to the same college, he let them graduate — which allowed me to write a senior year in “real time”. You ask what this added to the show? How ’bout four-five seasons worth of new episodes that would probably wouldn’t have been ordered if they stayed in high school.

TDW: Your wife also worked on the show, right?

Rosin: Karen’s first professional writing credit was for “Isn’t It Romantic?,” the AIDS episode where Brenda and Dylan [Luke Perry] first go out — and where an enraged Dylan slams the flower pot into the pavement before chasing after Brenda [ed. note: Episode 1.10].  Although Karen was never offered a staff position, chances are she wrote, or co-wrote your favorite episodes, including all the ones set in Paris [ed. note: Episodes 3.3-3.5], the condom in school episode [Episode 2.21, Everybody’s Talkin’ ‘Bout It ], the one where Scott  accidentally shoots himself, the one where Dylan meets his inner-child [Episode 3.22, The Child Is Father To The Man], the Christmas episode with the angels answer Donna’s [Tori Spelling] prayers by preventing a school bus from crashing bus [Episode 3.16, It’s A Totally Happening Life], and the graduation episode [Episode 3.29, Commencement], which we wrote together. You can hear our commentary for “Commencement” on the third season DVD. Karen,  a former actress and playwright,  has a great ear for dialogue. My strength as a writer was (and is) always story and story structure — so we were great collaborators. If Mr. Spelling and I had anything in common it was our love and appreciation of nepotism.

TDW: Your daughter is just a bit older than me.  Did she watch the show growing up?  What does she think knowing her parents played a big role in one of the biggest shows of the 90s?

Rosin: My eldest daughter Lindsey was five when I started working on the 90210. She’s the cutie-pie who asks Brandon to dance the hookelau at the end of summer luau at the Beverly Hills Beach Club [ed. note: Episode 2.6, Pass/Not Pass]. Growing up she never bragged about my job, in fact, didn’t tell her teen-aged camp counselors about me until the last day of the session. Lindsey knew at a young age she wanted to be a director, and is currently developing an hour pilot with CBS Paramount — in addition to be the creative force behind showbizzle.

TDW: You have said you left the show because it was “killing” you.  Can you elaborate on that?

Rosin: For the first two seasons, Beverly Hills 90210 had the lowest license fee in broadcast television — meaning that Fox paid the Spelling Company less money to make our show than any other show in prime time.  One of the ways we cut costs was to assemble a small writing staff composed of mostly new writers,  but once our production orders increased to anywhere from 28- 32 hours a year (a standard network order for a hit show is anywhere from 13-22 episodes a year; a cable show much less than that) the lack of a big staff took its toll and I found myself working 12-16 hours a day, 6 1/2 days a week, 11 1/2 months a year.  Six weeks after I mixed my last episode, “P.S. I Love You” [ed note: Episode 5.32], one of my arteries shut down. I was 43 years old.  We caught it early. I dodged a bullet. And 15 years later, I catch waves and feel great.

TDW: Did you keep up with the show after you left?

Rosin: I was a non-exclusive script consultant for the 6th season where I read outlines and offered my suggestions — most of which weren’t followed.  I do remember watching one episode that year where NFL star quarterback Steve Young was a guest star [ed. note: Episode 6.12, Breast Side Up] because it was written by Larry Mollin and directed by Dave Semel, who both remain good friends today.   I did not watch after that — and felt that show lost much of its cultural currency and degenerated into a more pedestrian and predictable soap opera– the kind of show more aligned with the traditional Spelling aesthetic.

TDW: Your last season–the fifth–was also Carol Potter’s last.  Did you agree with the decision to get rid of Jim [James Eckhouse] and Cindy?  (Ed. note: see my related interview here.)

Rosin: Reluctantly, yes. Creatively, the show no longer evolved around the Walsh House — and although we certainly could have come up with new storylines that included the parents in a supporting capacity, both Carol Potter and Jim Eckhouse were taking home a fairly big pay check — and by writing them off the show, those monies could be applied to other things — like paying Jason Priestley [Brandon] and Jennie Garth [Kelly] to stick around.

TDW: I have to ask:  Brenda and Dylan or Kelly and Dylan?

Rosin: Brenda was our favorite character to write; the scene where Dylan and Kelly hook up the night Jack McKay was released at the pool at the Bel Age in season three [ed. note: Episode 3.19,  Back in the High Life Again] was perhaps the hottest scene we ever shot — in other words, it’s a draw…

TDW: Kelly and Dylan or Kelly and Brandon?

Rosin: I’ll always be partial to Kelly and Steve.

TDW: What was your reaction when you found out the season 10 storyline (Episodes 10.18-10.20) that Jack McKay (Josh Taylor) was alive?

Rosin: Well, I first found out about Jack McKay when I opened your e-mail. (Like I said, I didn’t watch the show once I left). But we purposely filmed the sequence in such a way as to leave this “return from the dead” storyline available. I guess they had to wait until Luke Perry returned to the series to revive this plot.

TDW: What was your reaction when you found out David and Donna were marrying in the series finale?

Rosin: It seemed about right; Karen and I and our three kids visited the set at the Beverly Hilton the day they were filming the wedding — and it was the first time I visited since I left the show five years earlier.

TDW: Do you have a favorite storyline?

Rosin: Lots of them — my favorite episode was Commencement because with all the clips that were incorporated into the two hour episode, it felt like a retrospective of the high school years.

TDW: Do you have a favorite memory from working with the cast? A favorite guest star? (There were a lot of them!)

Rosin: I loved watching Jason directing the episode “The Time Has Come Today” from the 4th Season [ed. note: Episode 4.25] where Brenda discovers a diary from the 1960’s in her bedroom. My favorite guest star would be my wife Karen, who played a lesbian in the episode “Girls On The Side,” [Episode 5.28] which she also wrote. Also Marcy Kaplan, who played TV star Lydia Leeds in the episode in which Brenda worked at the Peach Pit and became Laverne [Episode 1.16, Fame is where You Find It]. Karen and I wrote that one together.

TDW: What surprised you most while working on the show?

Rosin: Like most writers I have an active imagination — and there have been times that I thought that the script I had just written would catapult me onto a podium for an awards ceremony. But I never could have imagined being a creative force behind an international television sensation! Or that you would be asking me these questions almost 20 years from the time that I started work on the show…

TDW: Do you have any regrets or anything you would do differently?

Rosin: Biggest regret is that I didn’t establish a relationship with media executive (and visionary) Barry Diller when he was running Fox. As far as doing things differently, I would have tried to take better care of my health, and maintain a sense of humor when dealing with the network instead of getting caught up in a war zone.

TDW: Looking back on the show today, what do you think is its place in television history?

Rosin: A footnote.

TDW: Are you still in touch with any of the cast?

Rosin: Yes — Jason Priestley is a buddy. James Eckhouse too. And Ian Ziering [Steve] is a great guy with whom I recently chatted about his early years in the business which we posted on Inside The Bizzle at showbizzle. Check it out. It is a must see for 90210 fans. [Ed. note: I linked to one of the Ian interviews here but there are many more here, including ones with BH90210 producer-writer John Eisendrath]

TDW: Have you watched the new 90210? Do you have any thoughts on it?

Rosin: I watched it once. It’s a good looking cast. But to do a show called 90210 and not allow your young characters to have any socio-political context in the age of Obama speaks to the cynicism and cowardice of commercial broadcasting.

TDW: You also worked on Dawson’s Creek a bit. How did your role differ there?

Rosin: I was more involved with the business side of producing than the writing of scripts — though I certainly had a hand in the creative development of the first episodes.

TDW: How do you think the shows themselves differ?

Rosin: I leave that for your community of readers to comment.

TDW: You’re now working on a site called showbizzle. What is it, and how did it come about?

Rosin: showbizzle is a digital showcase and destination website I created with daughter Lindsey (the Hookelau girl) for emerging talent away from the immediate pressures of the market place. We created a cool show featuring 29 young actors performing 141 two-minute scripted monologues about what they are doing to jump start their careers in Hollywood as told to Janey, a fictitious blogger who hangs out at an LA coffee house. Our goal here to create a vibrant community of young actors, writers, comedians, and performers around our showbizzle content where members are encouraged to upload their original videos with the chance to be paid $$ to perform on our digital showcase. So check showbizzle.com, become a member, work with us, tell your friends — and see why Cynopsis Digital said that it “should be required viewing for kids thinking of moving out to LA LA land to chase their dreams of stardom as it delves into the frustrations of being on the outside looking in.”

TDW: Anything else you want to add?

Rosin: Hard to believe the show’s 20th anniversary is coming up . To get to know what the early days were like check out Rolling Stone Magazine’s article “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (issue 624) originally published February 20th, 1992.

For more on showbizzle, head over to the site.

Come back next Sunday for another exclusive interview!

TDW Interview Index





Spoiler: Ask Ausiello

1 10 2009

RELEVANT QUESTIONS–DON’T READ IF YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW!!!

Question: Rumor has it that Ausiello has been slacking on his Gossip Girl scoop. —Tina
Ausiello:
Rumor has it you smell, but you don’t see me spreading that around, do you? Here’s your damn GG scoop: Tyra Banks’ guest turn as a tempestuous film actress in Monday’s episode is highlarious. Even better, she wasn’t trying to be funny, so you’ll be laughing at her and not with her! Awesome, right? Well, the news just keeps getting better ’cause I gots me a clip!

Question: I’d give my left hand and my first two children (named Aus and Hole, of course) if you would give us a juicy Gossip Girl scoop. The Dan-Georgina hookup ruined Brooklyn for me forever! —Erin
Ausiello:
Well, there’s no D&G in Monday’s episode. There is a fair amount of D&D (Dan and Duff, as in Hilary), and, I have to say, I don’t hate them together. I’m also kind of loving Chuck and Blair as an official couple. Kudos to Team Schwavage for doing what few TV writers have ever been able to — making an entertaining couple even more entertaining together than apart.

Question: Anything on One Tree Hill? —Anita
Ausiello:
Casting scoop! Former NFL star and Hall of Famer John Riggins has been cast in the potentially recurring role of Clay’s boss, Ken Arthur. The sometime-actor (Law & Order: CI, Guiding Light) shows up in episode 10.

****

Really like the term “Schwavage” but I totally disagree with the rest of the sentence!

Credit: EW.com





Spoiler: Watch with Kristin

14 07 2009

RELEVANT QUESTIONS–DON’T READ IF YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW!!!

Dennis in Brooklyn, N.Y.: Now that Mercy begins shooting way earlier to fill in the gap left by Parenthood‘s move to midseason, what does this mean for Michelle Trachtenberg and her stint on Gossip Girl?
Our sources tell us that Michelle Trachtenberg won’t miss a beat of Gossip Girl. She’s doing everything she was expected to do as of last spring, and Georgina’s episodes are good! However, Kelly Rutherford will be missing three episodes for her maternity leave. Still, despite Lily’s absence, expect her love child Scott (Chris Riggi) to stay front and center this season. Are you excited for the biggest Humphrey-van der Woodsen crossover of them all, or are you withholding judgment on Scott until you get to know him better?

Paula in Columbia, S.C.: Any news on 90210?
Ooh, Silver is not going to like this one bit: Next season on 90210, Dixon flirts with another woman. Her name is Sasha, and she’s a professional DJ who is said to have a Rihanna vibe. In other 90210 news, Annie stays psycho for the time being. As Monty Burns from The Simpsons would say, “Excellent.”

Duffy in San Jose, Calif.: I heard one of my heroes is guest starring in the first episode of the new season of One Tree Hill. Do you have details?
Yes we do, Duffy! Former NFL superstar Jerry Rice guest stars on the first episode of One Tree Hill this fall. He makes an appearance at Nathan’s son’s birthday party. Sophia Bush tells us it was mayhem when Jerry came on set: “It was really funny to see every guy lose his mind. When he walked on set, camera equipment was getting dropped and people rushed in. The grips, who don’t care about anything were like, ‘Oh my God, Jerry Rice!’ People went nuts. And I was like, ‘This is man world. We’ve entered a man cave.’ ”

Jenna from Kent, Ohio: Do you know who is coming back for the seventh season of One Tree Hill?
As we all know, One Tree Hill has a revolving door of characters. The other day when we spoke with Ashley Rickards, she said it’s not a question of if her character Samantha Walker is returning, but when: “I think Sam has a really strong bond with Brooke, and I don’t see that just vanishing overnight.”

Gaby in Dodge City, Kan.: What can you tell us about the new season of Entourage?
Autumn Reeser is back on our TVs! Happy dance! (She and fellow O.C.er Rachel Bilson have now officially been gone too long.) Autumn plays an upcoming junior agent at Miller-Gold who is hooking up with Gary Cole‘s greasy character, Andrew Klein. Also, we would like to formally request that Autumn become a regular in season seven and/or get a successful show of her own so we can hang out with her more.





Spoiler: Mega Buzz

24 06 2009

RELEVANT QUESTIONS–DON’T READ IF YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW!!!

Can we assume that Gossip Girl‘s Serena won’t be attending Brown now that she’s off chasing Daddy Dearest? — Becky
MICKEY: Here’s what Blake Lively told us about Serena’s plans in the wake of being slapped with that paternal jaw-dropper. “She’s thrown for this huge loop,” she says. “There are a lot of things she’s going to find out about her mother and about her background.” In other words, Serena will not be heading to Providence in the fall… but she might not be in New York either.

Do you know if One Tree Hill plans to cast an African-American or other minority in any of the roles being added? — Dee Bee
MATT: Thus far, you’re 0-for-2 on that wish, seeing as Robert Buckley and Shantel VanSanten have been cast as Nathan’s agent and Haley’s sister, Quinn, respectively. As for “Alex” (the supermodel fronting Brooke’s new clothing line), Tree Hill is looking at “all ethnicities,” so there’s some hope there. For what’s it worth, I can offer up this concrete piece of guest casting: NFL legend Jerry Rice will appear as himself in the Sept. 14 season opener.

Is there a shot for the CW to pick up Body Politic as a midseason replacement?  From the sneak peeks I’ve seen, it looks like it’s got lots of promise, and I really need a weekly Jason Dohring fix! — Gina
MICKEY: I’m with you, Gina! Body reminds me of the heady mid-’90s, when I actually called Washington, D.C., home (in large part because of the movie St. Elmo’s Fire). My CW mole tells me that the Beltway drama is still in the running for a midseason slot, but that it’s up against the Gossip Girl spin-off, which has a few high-ranking fans in the building.

**Note: Brian Austin Green (David, Beverly Hills 90210) also stars in Body Politic.








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