It's strange to think a show like Gossip Girl existed in a time before smartphones and social media were a big deal, mostly because the teen drama relied so heavily on online gossip. The hit show was airing at the same time society's relationship with apps and tech was going through a drastic evolution, and that's something Penn Badgley and Chace Crawford reflected on in a recent interview looking back on the show. Penn Badgley and Chace Crawford's Gossip Girl reunion revealed so many behind-the-scenes details about making the series, and some thoughts on why it's still so monumental.
Over a decade after Badgley and Crawford first brought the characters of Dan Humphrey and Nate Archibald to life, the actors are once again helming hit shows about morally questionable men. Badgley currently stars as an obsessive serial killer on Netflix's You, and Crawford plays an entitled superhero on Amazon Prime's The Boys. "It’s interesting to me, because also, man, to be honest, we move on from Gossip Girl to playing despicable white male privileged guys," Crawford pointed out during his Variety "Actors on Actors" chat with Badgley.
The former costars talked about their current projects, but of course, the main topic of conversation was Gossip Girl. The duo admitted the show's big twist ending — revealing Dan was Gossip Girl all along — kind of came out of nowhere. "It didn’t really line up with the character of Dan. Right?" Crawford mused, to which Badgley confirmed, "Yeah." The show's Gossip Girl reveal has been widely panned by fans, and producers even admitted to constantly changing their minds on who the secret character could be.
Things were perhaps even more confusing behind the scenes of the show, as the cast was just learning about smartphones along with the rest of the world. Crawford recalled that Badgley had the first edition of the iPhone back in 2007, even though he didn't really want one. "Blake [Lively] got me that," Badgley revealed. "I literally was like, 'I don’t want this thing. It’s so cumbersome, and it has all these apps on it.'"
Throughout the lengthy chat, Badgley and Crawford reminisced about a bunch of fun memories from the time they went from unknown actors to the biggest names in television. They recalled how strange it felt to attend their first red carpet event at the Palace Hotel, and Badgley told a fun story about how he changed the name of a Gossip Girl-themed grilled cheese sandwich at a restaurant.
Check out the full conversation for yourself below.
Badgley and Crawford ended the chat by wishing HBO Max's upcoming Gossip Girl sequel series well, saying they're both very interested in seeing the new take on the show (but not saying they'd join the cast in any way, darn it). The Gossip Girl sequel series is set to debut on HBO Max in 2021.