Penn Badgley Buzzed Off His Hair The Day They Shot The "Gossip Girl" Pilot, Which Apparently Was Not At All Planned

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Hey Upper East Siders! There's a new Gossip Girl podcast in town. XOXO is hosted by former cast member Jessica Szohr (who played Vanessa Abrams). For its premiere episode, she chatted with the original CW drama's creators and executive producers Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage.

Jessica Szohr
Rachel Kaplan / iHeartMedia

And we learned A LOT.

Giphy / Warner Media / Via giphy.com

For example, before they settled on Kristen Bell to voice Gossip Girl, apparently Christina Ricci and Selma Blair were in consideration to potentially be Gossip Girl.

Christina Ricci
Charley Gallay / Getty Images for Vulture

Side note: I could totally see that for Selma — remember how great she was as UES prep school student Cecile in Cruel Intentions?

Giphy / Warner Media / Via giphy.com

Also, apparently Penn Badgley was cast to play Dan Humphrey with long "snowboarder" hair, but he buzzed all of his hair off the day of the pilot.

Penn Bagdley
Randy Holmes / ABC via Getty Images

"He showed up on set with his big hair," Stephanie said. "That morning that he went on camera, the first scene we shot of him and Rufus (Matthew Settle) putting up flyers in Brooklyn for the Lincoln Hawk concert, and we brought him into the trailer, and they buzzed all of his hair off."

Penn Bagdley
Jason Kempin / FilmMagic / Getty Images

"Which is a nightmare for the network," Josh added, "Because normally the network makes you do hair tests, and they want to approve everything. And all the sudden it was like, 'Penn shaved his head??' Then everybody saw him and was like, 'Oh damn. He looks good.'"

Penn Badgley
Kevin Mazur / Getty Images

As for Blake Lively, aka Serena Van der Woodsen, Josh and Stephanie talked about how there was a "big online push" for Blake to play Serena even before the series started.

Blake Lively
Michel Dufour / WireImage / Getty Images

"The characters really needed to be imbued with warmth and a kind of a rootability that the book characters didn't necessarily have," Stephanie reasoned.

Blake Lively
Rob Loud / Getty Images

"And so Blake's natural warmth and her California sunniness was actually going to be a great quality to bring to Serena. That she loves her brother, that she cares about her friends, that she's trying to be a better person, Blake was going to bring all of that in spades versus some other actress who might be a more natural Serena, but wasn't going to be able to infuse Serena with those positive qualities that we needed her to have."

Blake Lively
Francois Durand / Getty Images

Listen to the whole episode here! XOXO.

Chace Crawford, Blake Lively, Penn Badgley, and Ed Westwick
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