Could Serena van der Woodsen and Blair Waldorf be making a comeback? Some fans are crossing their fingers after news broke on July 17 that an updated version of Gossip Girl is officially happening. Yes, the former CW show—based on the book series by Cecily von Ziegesar—is getting the reboot treatment by WarnerMedia’s soon-to-be-launched streaming service, HBO Max.
Rumors of a Gossip Girl return have been swirling since February. The exact details are still under wraps, but the log line reveals a few clues about what we can expect: "Eight years after the original website went dark, a new generation of New York private school teens are introduced to the social surveillance of Gossip Girl. The prestige series will address just how much social media—and the landscape of New York itself—has changed in the intervening years," it reads.
Beyond that, here's what we know so far about the series.
There will be 10 episodes. According to Deadline, HBO has ordered 10 hour-long episodes of the new version of the show. As the log line shows, it'll tackle contemporary issues, including social media and online privacy, that have changed some of the dynamics in today's high schools.
The original creators are behind the new version. Original program creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage are going to be executive producers. Joshua Safran, a writer and producer on the OG show, is also on board and in charge of writing the reboot.
The leads are nonwhite, and there will be plenty of LGBTQ+ storylines. Joshua Safran, who wrote and executive produced the original show, confirmed this at Vulture Festival on November 10. "There was not a lot of representation the first time around on the show,” he said. "I was the only gay writer I think the entire time I was there. Even when I went to private school in New York in the ’90s, the school didn’t necessarily reflect what was on Gossip Girl. So, this time around the leads are nonwhite. There’s a lot of queer content on this show. It is very much dealing with the way the world looks now, where wealth and privilege come from, and how you handle that. The thing I can’t say is there is a twist, and that all relates to the twist.”
The cast is still coming together. While the show will focus on a new generation, it seems like there's some hope that previous members might make an appearance. “We've reached out to all of them to let them know it was happening and we'd love for them to be involved if they want to be involved, but certainly didn't want to make it contingent upon [them being involved],” executive producer Josh Schwartz said Friday (July 26) at the Television Critics Association summer press tour, according to Entertainment Tonight. “They played these characters for six years, and if they felt like they were good with that, we want to respect that, but obviously...it would be great to see them again.”
In past interviews, the cast has had lots of different opinions about a reboot. Chace Crawford (Nate) has signaled before that he wasn't wild about new episodes with the original stars.
"I don't think anyone's been seriously talking about that. I think they'd have to come up with a real plan, and I know Josh and Stephanie would have to be a part of it," he told Entertainment Tonight in February. "It is funny to me, it's almost become a classic now. It probably goes to show you that we shouldn't be redoing it. I can't be in high school anymore. That's the thing. I don't even know what they would do. For me personally, I would love to see everybody again and I loved everybody and I would love to work with everybody, but I don't know if it's necessarily a reality."
Still, he changed his tune slightly when he spoke to Digital Spy in July, saying he'd "absolutely have to cameo"—and then elaborated further on that in September. Speaking to August Man, he told the magazine that he'd "definitely be open" to returning for a cameo. "If there’s an opening in the future for doing a cameo, I would definitely be open to it,” the actor said. “The show was a big part of my life and was really special. I loved everyone on it, from the cast to the crew. We were a real family." However, he did add that the Amazon series he's in, The Boys “is my priority now.” But, he added, when he received news of the reboot, "It just makes me feel old."
"I got an email about it right before my birthday," he told August Man. "It’s funny they’re already rebooting it."
Blake Lively (Serena) has explained that she would not say never to the idea. "It sort of all depends," she told Variety in 2017. "Would I do seven years of the show? No, because it's hard work and I've got my babies, and I don't want to be away from them that much. But I've just learned in life you never say never. I'm looking to do something that I haven't done yet, not something that I did. But would I do that? Who knows—if it was good, if it made sense. We had so much fun shooting and living and working in New York City."
However, Safran added that we can rule out one thing: seeing the next generation of the old crew. There will be no children of former characters on this run. "No, we're not that old!" he joked at TCA, reports ET.
There have also been rumors that Kristen Bell would return as the voice of Gossip Girl. Although we didn't see her face on our screens (until the final episode), Bell's voiceovers are as much a part of the iconic show as Blair's and Serena's style. When asked about a possible return by E! News, she coyly replied, "Maybe. I'll never tell."
But Bell's return was confirmed on Thursday, November 7. According to Variety, Bell has officially signed on to the HBO Max reboot as the titular narrator. XOXO!
But it sounds as if the majority of the cast will be fresh faces on the show. "Stephanie and I had been talking about it off and on over the past couple of years, and obviously you're seeing more shows get revisited, "Schwartz said at TCA on Friday, July 26, according to ET. "Certainly, on social media, there were people asking for it. We felt that a version with our cast grown up, regardless of what the challenges would be of assembling those actors again, it didn't really feel like a group of adults that would be patrolled by Gossip Girl would make a lot of sense."
"So we thought there was something really interesting about the idea that we are all Gossip Girl now, in our own way, that we are all purveyors of our own social media surveillance state and how that has evolved and how that has mutated and morphed and telling that through a new generation of Upper East Side high school kids," he added.
We'll update this post with more details as they come in. XOXO.
Originally Appeared on Glamour