Oct23 2016

Gossip Girl Co-Creator Josh Schwartz on the Enduring Romantic Legacy of Chuck Bass and Blair Waldorf

When Gossip Girl premiered on the CW in 2007, the show’s quick, meteoric rise to cultural prominence came as no surprise to anyone. (Especially not here at Vulture.) And there’s no way we could cap off the final week of our TV Couple Scuffle without discussing the epically tumultuous romance shared by Chuck Bass and Blair Waldorf, portrayed by Ed Westwick and Leighton Meester, respectively. (Try not to get too emotional thinking about “three words, eight letters, say it and I’m yours.”) Eager to learn more about the inner workings of the romance, we called up Josh Schwartz — who, along with his frequent creative partner, Stephanie Savage, served as a co-creator and writer of the show — to examine all things Chair.

Their romance wasn’t planned when the show was initially being written.
“None of that was expected. Chuck came into the show as the villain. But it’s one of those great, fun things about making a television series — it’s an evolving, living, breathing thing, and things can easily change on a whim. You get an actor like Ed Westwick and see the chemistry he had with Leighton Meester, and their scenes just crackled. So it felt like, here are two people who are bonded by their mutual scheming and the dark side of the show, at least from the beginning, and that would naturally evolve into a romantic relationship. One that was fraught and often conflict-laden, but ultimately incredibly romantic and fulling for both the characters and the audience. They came into the show as very different kinds of roles, but the chemistry between them took over.”

Despite their tumultuous courtship, they were always built to last.
“When we went into each season, we asked what could be done with these core relationships — we have Dan and Serena, we have Chuck and Blair — at the center of the show. You can challenge them, you can put them with other people. Obviously we put Blair and Dan together, which was for some people the best thing they’ve ever seen and for some people it was absolutely antithetical to everything they wanted from those characters. And that’s also the fun of it. But the plan for Chuck and Blair was always a ‘long-term play’ once we saw that chemistry, in the same way that Dan and Serena were — as much as we were going to break these people apart, and earn their way back into these other’s lives. In a way, that love story between those two characters was always one of the overarching stories of the whole show, and we knew that. As far as we pushed them, we always had to be able to find a way to bring them back together.”

Cecily von Ziegesar, the creator of the Gossip Girl book series, supported the romance even though it wasn’t a prominent plotline in her books.
“She was great and very open to the fact that the books were the books, and the show had to be something else. And obviously you’re casting a show in a way you’re not casting books, so things can change and evolve. Very early on she was excited about the fact that fans of the books could watch the show and now know how everything was going. She was very supportive of that stuff, and that relationship.”

Their relationship was defined by their passion.
“You could tell from all the sniping and one-liners and humor that a lot of their stories played out with a palpable sense of passion. Chuck was the bad boy who was reformed by Blair. She taught and helped him become a better person. For Blair, who had all of her issues and was so uptight and was always in competition with Serena, you wanted to see her have something on her own that was fulfilling. You were able to see them both evolve and change because of their relationship, but also it was a hell of a lot of fun along the way. They were scheming all the time. We always talked about Dangerous Liaisons when it came to them, and there was a lot of that in their relationship. It was the fun of those characters, but also the deep emotion and real love and yearning there as well. In that first script where they got together, it definitely surprised and excited everyone. When we saw the scene with them in the back of the limo, it was a home run. Everyone knew at that moment that it turned up the heat on the show in a way that was really exciting.”

The most “emotional” scene between the two was filmed in the Paris train station.
“That scene was beautiful and romantic, and full of pain and longing. We were shooting it at five o’clock in the morning at this Paris train station. We kind of had the station to ourselves, but then people starting showing up to go to work and going on and off the trains, and they were drawing attention to our production. How can you forget Blair in that red dress? They were filming arguably the most vivid and memorable scene of the show; a scene of purely intense emotion between them. And for those two actors to keep that focus with all of the swirling activity at the train station at that time, I was really impressed.”

Their romantic legacy boils down to how much growth they had as a couple.
“Thinking about other shows Stephanie and I have worked on — especially thinking of which couples end up popping that you’re not expecting to pop — with Chuck and Blair it was a show about ‘young’ people, but they were incredibly sophisticated and devious compared to their peers. They were drawn to each other’s dark sides, but then found happiness and enlightenment and love because of that. The idea of these two people starting off as the ‘villains’ of the show becoming, for the large part, the romantic center of the show, was a unique quality that really makes that particular relationship more notable. Just because someone comes into a show as a villain doesn’t mean you’re not going to end up falling in love with them. There were regressions a few times, as everyone well knows, but they never gave up on each other. As bad as things got and as devious as they were, they always found their way back to each other. I think that idea of coming in from not being the obvious romantic couple from the beginning of the show, to evolving into something way more, was really fun to watch and satisfying for audiences. They had that wicked quality to them. They both knew how to deliver a joke. We wrote it like Benedict and Beatrice from Much Ado About Nothing, and, as mentioned before, a little bit of the Dangerous Liaisons quality. There was a lot of good inspiration driving us.”

Their familial future is optimistic.
“Henry definitely goes to St. Jude’s and hopefully doesn’t follow in his father’s footsteps. They’re definitely happy, I would say.”

Source: Vulture

Sep22 2016

Leighton and Adam at the Startup Premiere Afterparty – August 23, 2016

Added three beautiful pics of Leighton and hubby Adam Brody at the premiere of Crackle’s Startup Afterparty. This was already a month ago, but had to wait to find good photos, so check out these HQ ones in the gallery!

Gallery Link:
Public Appearances > 2016 > Premiere of Crackles’s Start up – Afterparty – August 23, 2016

Aug23 2016

Snatch: Rupert Grint, Dougray Scott, Ed Westwick Join New Crackle Drama Series

This just in! A Drama Series with two of my faves, Ed Westwick and Rupert Grint, very awesome!!

Rupert Grint is coming to the small screen. Today, Crackle announced the Harry Potter star has been cast in their upcoming series Snatch.

Based on the 2001 film, the drama “centers on a group of twenty-something, up and coming hustlers who stumble upon a truck load of stolen gold bullion and are suddenly thrust into the high-stakes world of organized crime.”

Grint will star alongside Dougray Scott and Ed Westwick. Nick Renton is slated to direct the series, which will premiere in 2017.

CULVER CITY, Calif. (August 22, 2016) – Crackle, Sony’s streaming network, today announced that Rupert Grint, most known for his role as Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter film franchise, will star in the network’s new scripted drama series, “Snatch,” based on the wildly popular movie of the same name. Grint, who most recently was seen on Broadway opposite Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane in “It’s Only a Play,” will play the dynamic, frustratingly chaotic and utterly posh, Charlie Cavendish, and will also serve as an executive producer. Additional cast includes Dougray Scott (“Fear The Walking Dead,” “Doctor Who”) as Vic Hill, and Ed Westwick (“Wicked City,” “Gossip Girl”) who will guest star as Sonny Castillo. Nick Renton (“The Musketeers,” “Jericho”) has signed on to direct the series which begins production next week in Manchester, England.

As previously announced at this year’s Upfront presentation, Crackle will carry the spirit of the setting in the original feature film, while creating a new world born from the original movie.

Inspired by a real life heist in London, “Snatch,” centers on a group of twenty-something, up and coming hustlers who stumble upon a truck load of stolen gold bullion and are suddenly thrust into the high-stakes world of organized crime. The boys must quickly learn to navigate the treacherous waters of London’s underworld as rogue cops, gypsy fighters, international mobsters and local villains descend. The series will premiere in 2017 with 10 one hour episodes. Alex De Rakoff also serves as executive producer and Helen Flint produces for Little Island Productions.

Source: TV Series Finale

Aug16 2016

Candids Update – Ed / Leighton

Here are some missing candids from Ed and Leighton in July. It’s about time we see some pics of them again right! Sorry for the delay, I’ve been moving and it took up a lot of time! almost done now 😉

Gallery Links:
Candids > 2016 Candids >
July 6, 2016
Candids > 2016 Candids > July 15, 2016
Candids > 2016 Candids > July 15, 2016
Candids > 2016 Candids > July 20, 2016

Jul17 2016

Billionaire Ransom Trailer – Ed

Ed in the trailer for his upcoming movie Billionaire Ransom previously known as Take Down.

Jun18 2016

Ed at the London Men Collection Shows – June 13, 2016

Gallery Link:
Public Appearances > 2016 > KATIE EARY SHOW – LONDON COLLECTIONS MEN SS17 – JUNE 13, 2016

May17 2016

Leighton at the Fox Upfronts 2016 – May 16, 2016

The wait is over! Leighton attended the Fox Upfronts yesterday in New York for her upcoming comedy Making History! It’s been over a year since Leighton made a public appearance and she sure looks amazing! What do you think of Leighton’s first red carpet appearance since april last year?

Gallery Link:

Public Appearances > 2016 > Fox Upfronts 2016 – May 16, 2016

May17 2016

Leighton Meester – Making History First Trailer

As reported earlier Leighton will be starring in a new comedy on Fox this Fall! Finally we have Leighton back on our screens again. Here is the first trailer for Leighton’s Making History. The show is set to air Midseason!
Let me know what you think in the comments or on twitter!

Produced by Phil Lord and Chris Miller (THE LAST MAN ON EARTH, “Lego Movie,” “21 Jump Street”), and written by Julius “Goldy” Sharpe (FAMILY GUY), the new comedy MAKING HISTORY follows three friends from two different centuries as they try to balance the thrill of time travel with the mundane concerns of their everyday lives. The wildly original series stars Adam Pally (“The Mindy Project,” “Happy Endings”), Leighton Meester (“Gossip Girl”) and Yassir Lester (“Girls,” “Key and Peele”).

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