Forget Hot Girl Summer. It’s going to be a Gossip Girl Summer! The sequel series will officially premiere in July 2021. It’s been nearly 10 years since Gossip Girl went off the air, but the show continues to make an impact. The show is getting revamped with a sequel series that will be the talk of the town. The new version will feature an all-new cast of stars. The show hasn’t even premiered yet, and we’re already obsessed.
Filming for the new season is nearly finished, after a shooting delay caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The show is back in the Big Apple once again. Gossip Girl has revealed the premiere date, and HBO Max has unveiled the character names of the core cast members and a tiny teaser about each of them. A recent interview gave us details about the new characters, including some of their connections to each other. HollywoodLife has rounded up all the latest updates about filming, the premiere date, the cast, and what the original stars have to say about the reboot.
‘Gossip Girl’ Premiere Date
The Gossip Girl reboot will premiere July 8 on HBO Max. The premiere date was revealed in the most Gossip Girl way ever. Fans could text a number to get updates about the new series. On May 28, Gossip Girl herself sent a brief teaser to her followers. “You’ve gotten so comfortable thinking you’re in control…” Gossip Girl says in the video. She added in a second text, “Rise and shine, my dear. They say good things come to those who wait, and it’s time you get yours. See you July 8. XOXO.” The first trailer was also released as well.
In the cast’s Cosmopolitan May/June 2021 cover story, it was revealed that the show would premiere on HBO Max in July. The original series aired on The CW, but the new series will air on HBO Max. HBO Max has not revealed whether the 10-episode series will release episodes weekly or all at once.
The Gossip Girl sequel series was supposed to originally premiere in the fall of 2020, but production was delayed earlier in the year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Filming started in Oct. 2020. The show is filming in New York, Los Angeles, and Vancouver, according to Variety. Cast member Emily Alyn Lind posted a photo of herself in the makeup trailer on her Instagram Story and wrote, “Day 1.”
Cast members Eli Brown and Whitney Peak were seen filming a scene in New York City in early Nov. 2020. On Nov. 10, the majority of the new cast — Emily, Eli, Whitney, Evan Mock, Zión Moreno, Thomas Doherty, Jordan Alexander, Savannah Lee Smith, and Tavi Gevinson — was seen filming scenes at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Nov. 10, 2020. The steps of the Met were a key location in the original series.
The names of the main cast members were unveiled in 2020. The first details were finally revealed on New Year’s Day. The cast’s character names were announced, as well as a one-word teaser.
Emily Alyn Lind
Emily plays Audrey Hope. Audrey values “grace.” Emily, 18, is best known for playing the young version of Amanda Clarke on Revenge. She also starred in the Netflix films The Babysitter and The Babysitter: Killer Queen. Emily played Snakebite Andi in the film Doctor Sleep. The actress is the daughter of One Tree Hill alum Barbara Alyn Woods.
Thomas, 25, plays Max Wolfe, who is all about “freedom.” Thomas is widely recognized for playing Harry Hook in the Descendants movies. The Scottish actor dated his Descendants co-star Dove Cameron from 2016 to 2020. He also appeared as Sebastian in The Vampire Diaries spinoff Legacies.
Jordan Alexander, 27, has been cast as Julien Calloway, who values “influence.” The Canadian singer and actress previously appeared in the TV series Sacred Lies and Unbury the Biscuit. She released the single “You” in June 2020.
Eli, 21, plays one of the lead characters, Otto “Obie” Bergmann IV. Obie’s one-word teaser? Privilege. The actor got his big break in the Pretty Little Liars spinoff, The Perfectionists, which ran for one season. He appeared in the Netflix series Spinning Out and TV shows Run Hide Fight and The F**k-It List.
Newcomer Savannah Smith stars as Monet de Haan, who values “power.” The Gossip Girl reboot is Savannah’s breakout role. The actress is studying acting at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.
Evan, 22, plays Akeno “Aki” Menzies, whose one-word teaser is “innocence.” This is his first acting role. Evan is a notable skateboarder and model. He’s appeared in campaigns for Calvin Klein, Lanvin, Saint Laurent, and more. Evan is a photographer himself and has shot a Saint Laurent sneaker campaign, as well as Travis Scott on his tour. He has a clothing brand called Sorry in Advance.
Zión, 28, stars as Luna La, who is all about “style.” Zión previously appeared in the TV series Control Z and Claws. Her first credited role was in the 2019 film K-12.
Whitney, 17, plays Zoya Lott in the sequel series, and her character’s one-word teaser is “perspective.” The actress previously played Judith in The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina and Alpha Jessica in Home Before Dark. One of her first roles was in the 2017 film Molly’s Game.
Tavi, 24, stars as Kate Keller, who values “ambition.” Tavi is known for being the founder and editor-in-chief of the online magazine Rookie. She segued into acting and has appeared in films and television shows over the years. She made her Broadway debut in 2014 in This Is Our Youth.
The new Gossip Girl will take place in the same universe that the original series took place. According to Deadline, the logline reads: “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.”
Like the identity of Gossip Girl, major details about the new plot are top-secret. However, showrunner Joshua Safran did tease to Cosmopolitan in April 2021 that there’s a big “twist” in the show. “My hope is that we make it to airing and people don’t know,” Josh said of the twist. “I would love to see that conversation happen in the context of people having seen it as opposed to talking about something they haven’t seen.”
Zoya, like Dan Humphrey before her, will be the viewer’s guide through this brave new world, according to the outlet. Audrey is a “posh student at Constance” and has been dating Aki “for ages.” Audrey’s best friend is Julien. As for Thomas, his character, Max, will have some very sexy scenes. “Does Max make out with boys?” Thomas told the magazine. “Yes, I do get naked, and yes, I do indulge.”
The behind-the-scenes team will be largely the same as the original series. Joshua was a writer and executive producer of the original series. He’s teaming up with Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, the co-creators of the original series, once again. Josh and Stephanie are executive producers of the new version.
Is The Original Cast Returning?
It’s no secret that the beloved CW series made household names out of Blake Lively, Penn Badgley, Leighton Meester, Ed Westwick, and Chace Crawford. The show, which ran for 6 seasons, became a pop culture phenomenon that has transcended time. The only original series cast member confirmed to return as of now is Kristen Bell, who voiced the titular character. She will narrate the HBO Max series once again, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
As for the core five cast members, the offer has been made. “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],” Josh Schwartz said at the Television Critics Association winter press tour in 2019. He added, “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.”
Chace, who played Nate Archibald, wasn’t opposed to the idea. “I could maybe come back and play a father or something. It’d be nice,” he said on WWHL in 2019. As for Penn, who played Dan Humphrey a.k.a. Gossip Girl, didn’t completely reject returning. He told Entertainment Tonight in 2019 that he had “not had conversations with any of the creators yet” but a return “would just depend on a lot of things.”
Blake, who played Serena van der Woodsen, had a similar feeling about returning as Penn. “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.”
Kelly Rutherford, who played Serena’s mom, Lily, told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that she would “love to return” to Gossip Girl. “It was such a beautiful time in my life and such a great role, and working with all these people was such a gift and such a joy,” Kelly told us back in Aug. 2019.