Gossip Girl Reboot: Things To KnowPublished on April 6, 2020.
Rumor has it that Gossip Girl is making a comeback. Are S and B returning to the big screen? That’s one secret we’ll never tell. Just kidding – we’ve got the inside scoop! It’s true. A Gossip Girl reboot is in the works and we’re breaking down everything we know so far.
The original creators are behind the new version
The masterminds behind the original Gossip Girl are picking up where they left off with the reboot and stepping back into their roles as the creators. Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage are going to be the executive producers while Joshua Safran, a writer and producer of the original, is in charge of writing the reboot.
There will be 10 episodes
According to Deadline, there will be 10 episodes that are one hour in length for the new version of the show. Executive producer Schwartz explained the show will follow a new storytelling format with longer episodes and shorter seasons. “I think we’re excited about being able to tell us a different version of the story, and with different levels of restrictions, and obviously, also with streaming, there’s fewer episodes,” he added. “So how you unpack those stories, or how you tell those stories can obviously vary different from a broadcast model.”
There will be inclusion, diversity, and representation
Writer Joshua Safran shared at Vulture Festival that the reboot would include nonwhite leads as well as LGBTQ+ storylines. “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 leading trio has been cast
In terms of casting, the reboot has reportedly already made some decisions about who would play the key roles. A Deadline report shared that Emily Alyn Lind will play a character named Audrey who “has been in a long term relationship and is beginning to wonder what more could be out there.” Whitney Peak, best known for her role as Judith on the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, will also join the cast as one of the leads. Eli Brown, most recently seen in Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists as Dylan Walker, will complete the leading trio.
Additional cast members have also been selected
Aside from the leading trio, additional members of the cast have also been selected. Johnathan Fernandez from the Lethal Weapon TV series and Broadway star Jason Gotay have been cast as “members of the core ensemble.” Actress Tavi Gevinson, Adam Chanler-Berat, Zion Moreno and High Fidelity’s Thomas Doherty have also been rumored to be a part of the cast.
Kristen Bell will reprise her role as Gossip Girl’s voiceover
Kristen Bell was the iconic voice behind Gossip Girl on the show’s original run and it’s been confirmed that she will reprise this role for the reboot. When Bell was asked about reprising the role she initially responded cryptically with, “Maybe, I’ll never tell.” However, it was later confirmed in a statement from Safran, Schwartz, and Savage: “Kristen Bell has always been and will always be the voice of Gossip Girl,” they shared.
The original characters will be a part of the reboot
When the Gossip Girl reboot was announced, one of the first questions many had was whether the original cast would reprise their roles. Safran explained that the new series will mention past characters because “the universe still exists.” He said, “They are a part of the world. The characters talk about them and that they do exist. So, yeah, I would love to have them come back. The show jumped five years in the future when it ended and we are past that five years now, so it’s whole new things that they could be doing.” He added, “I think of [the reboot] like the Marvel universe. It’s not a continuation or a sequel. It truly just is looking at a different angle.”
The show will reflect the current age of social media
Safran also shared that the plot will revolve heavily around social media to reflect the new age of teenagers. “I think it very much represents where we will be at in 2020 when the show airs,” Safran reportedly shared. “It really looks at how social media has changed. You know, the first time around, when the show started people were, like, checking in places on Foursquare and updating their locations on Facebook. Things we would never do now because we don’t want anyone to know where we are. That change alone changes the dynamic of what Gossip Girl means and how Gossip Girl interacts with the kids this day and age, so I think it’s gonna be really interesting to see the modern age reflected through Gossip Girl.”
There won’t be one singular Gossip Girl character
In the original, it was revealed in the final episode (spoiler alert!) that character Dan Humphrey, played by Penn Badgley, was the mastermind behind Gossip Girl the entire series. Schwartz revealed that the reboot wouldn’t follow a similar strategy this time around. “It didn’t really feel like a group of adults who were being controlled by Gossip Girl would make a lot of sense,” Schwartz explained to E! News. “There was something really interesting about this idea that we are all Gossip Girl now, in our own way. We are all purveyors of our own social media surveillance state, and how that’s evolved, and how that has morphed and mutated and telling that story through a new generation of Upper East Side high school kids felt like the right time.”
It will be quite modest in nature
During the Television Critics Association summer press tour, Schwartz revealed that the reboot won’t be as risqué as some of the current teen television shows in rotation like Euphoria. “I think you don’t ever want to feel gratuitous or something that you’re doing just because. Luckily, we’re now airing post-Euphoria, so anything we do will seem tame in comparison I don’t think will be that controversial,” the executive producer explained. “What feels organic to the tone of the show won’t be button-pushing just for the sake of being able to do it.”
The plot will act as a sequel to the original storyline
Deadline has confirmed that the Gossip Girl reboot will be set “eight years after the original website went dark” and a “new generation of New York private school teens are introduced to the social surveillance of Gossip Girl.” Safran shared that some key elements of the show will remain the same, however. “It’s the same high school, so we’re back at Constance Billard. We are looking at a group of friends in their junior year. Those pieces are the same. They’re still in the uniforms,” he shared. “Not everyone lives on the Upper East Side, though. Brooklyn’s not the bad place to live. Brooklyn’s probably cooler in the new version than Manhattan, ’cause it is in some places. Other than that, it has the DNA of the original.”
The show will air in 2020 on HBOMax
In terms of exactly when and where we can watch the reboot, details are still in the works. We do know that it will be released sometime in 2020 and will stream exclusively on HBOMax. The streaming platform is going to be launching in May of 2020, so it’s possible that the show will be released alongside the launch or sometime after.
The first script is complete
Sarah Aubrey, the head of original content at HBO Max, shared at the TCAs in January 2020 that the first draft of the script is complete. “We have gotten the first script [by showrunner Safran], and I can tell you we all breathed a big sigh of relief because it’s quite good,” Aubrey shared. “You can imagine the bar is very high. I think that one of the benefits of having the original creators involved, they’re very clear of what the essential elements of the show are and are not. And also, really excited to bring a modern lens to it 10 years later. Josh and team have done a great job so far.”